India Philanthropy Alliance (IPA) launches nationwide youth essay competition

May 8, 2020 | Author: Alex Counts, Senior Adviser at India Philanthropy Alliance


Contact: Alex Counts

Senior Adviser, India Philanthropy Alliance

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Press Release


The India Philanthropy Alliance (IPA) launches a nationwide youth essay competition for middle and high school students

Member organizations of IPA also announce their COVID-19 response


Washington, DC, USA —The India Philanthropy Alliance (IPA), a U.S.-based coalition of organizations that aid India, has launched a nationwide youth essay competition for middle and high school students to submit their ideas on how to effectively engage in philanthropy, including philanthropy benefiting India.

“Our hope through this essay competition is that the India Philanthropy Alliance can both push and amplify the best thinking of Indian-American youth about philanthropy and about what smart giving can do for India,” said Deepak Raj, Chairman of IPA.

Up to ten finalist essays by middle and high school students will be selected by a panel of philanthropy experts, and will be published on the Internet.

For middle school students, the essay length is 600 words or fewer, and for high school students, the limit is 1,200 words. The deadline for submissions is June 1, 2020.

The authors of the best essay in each cohort will be invited to the Indiaspora Philanthropy Summit, tentatively scheduled for the fall, to present their award-winning ideas. They also will be able to direct at least $1,000 to a nonprofit of their choice.

“With the current public health and humanitarian crisis, the stakes have never been higher,” said Sanjeev Joshipura, Executive Director of Indiaspora, a member organization of IPA. “With so many students learning at home, this is an opportunity for parents to perhaps encourage their children to think about how best to help the less fortunate.”

The pilot is made possible with generous support from the Sarva Mangal Family Trust, supported by the Shah Family of Orange County and their company MS International, Inc. They are also advising and assisting in the process.

“The Sarva Mangal Family Trust is pleased to support India Philanthropy Alliance’s essay competition,” said Rup and Mona Shah of Sarva Mangal Family Trust. “We look forward to hearing what young people throughout the country are thinking about philanthropy and how it can be done right and in ways that benefit India. We are keen to learn about their innovative solutions.”

The essay competition is one of multiple initiatives of the IPA to grow the culture of philanthropy among the diaspora in the United States.

The IPA also announced Tuesday what each of its organizations is doing to respond to the COVID-19 crisis and meet critical need. Responses include providing essential knowledge, protecting communities and frontline workers, ensuring education for school-age children, fighting hunger, supporting and collaborating with government to meet critical health needs, aiding affected populations, training health care professionals, and continuing to operate programs or preparing to re-launch those on hold.

The twelve member organizations of the IPA include Akanksha Education Fund, American India Foundation, Arogya World, CRY America, Ekal USA, Foundation for Excellence (FFE), Indiaspora, Magic Bus USA, Pratham USA, Project ECHO, VisionSpring and WISH Foundation.

The IPA ( is a coalition of nonprofit, philanthropic and charitable organizations that mobilize people and funding in the United States (and elsewhere) for development and poverty-reduction programs in India.

For additional information on the background and essay guidelines of the youth essay competition, please visit here.

For any questions, please reach out to Alex Counts, Senior Adviser at India Philanthropy Alliance at

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