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May 09, 2002
The Hindu - Metro plus

NOT MANY know that for a small amount given once, a whole village in India (of a few hundred) can achieve near 100 per cent literacy - through a small school and various community learning programmes. And this annual amount, for many, especially Indians living outside the country, is something easily affordable. And for many who possess this `giving' attitude, they would never quite know where they can give it to, to reach the genuine needy.

When trusted people spend the money given, wisely, and at least 80 to 90 per cent of the money actually given reaches the end user, why would anyone hesitate to give? Causes in this world are plenty - and there are always people and organisations in need of money to carry on the good work. It's not always easy to get donations - what is more, it's not very easy either to convince people that they are working for someone who desperately needs money! But having said that, it's also not too difficult to show people how their money could be put to good use - if there are more organisations like Give Foundation - Giving Impetus To Voluntary Effort - which acts as a bridge between donors and those who could benefit from such donations from all over the world!

This foundation, in keeping with the times and the advances in technology, has set up an online portal that allows people to donate online with a high degree of personalism and assurance. It is a non-profit organisation dedicated to professionalisation of the voluntary sector.

According to the spokesperson of Give Foundation, their job is to raise funds for good NGOs that are part of the voluntary sector. The foundation's reasoning is that the `giving' industry (even though part of the non-profit sector) for instance in the U.S., is currently worth about $200 billion per annum. The corresponding Indian figure is estimated at less than U.S. $1 billion.

Therefore, they feel, there is a substantial number of Indians, especially the NRIs, for whom `giving' has become part of their life. And if, they say, such efforts are encouraged by proper channelling, information and support, especially to provide for India's development, then it could go a long way in making a difference.

According to them, many NGOs have registered with them and it takes between 15 days and 2 months to process the registration, which involves a lot of detailing for the benefit of prospective donors.

Till date, they have roughly raised Rs. 1.46 crores considering the fact that they started only on September 11, 2000 with a trial version doing its appearance in August. There are approximately 6,500 donors of whom 60 per cent are resident Indians and 40 per cent non-resident Indians. The areas for which there is maximum interest are broadly childrens' education and care, disability and disasters.

Give Foundation manages the ICICIcommunities .org site with financial and other kind of support from ICICI Ltd. ICICIcommunities .org allows people to donate, shop for rural crafts and provide voluntary support. Give Foundation ( manages the donation channel. For further details contact

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