Disaster Relief Initiatives

Chennai Flood Relief Efforts

Dear All,
As you may be aware, Chennai and certain other parts of Tamil Nadu have borne the brunt of a devastating flood due to unprecedented rainfall. In the initial days, fundraising by many individuals and organizations were focused on immediate relief operations – specifically with regard to providing stop-gap arrangements to the many who had been displaced from their homes and had no access to basic amenities.

Now with the worst of the floods behind it, Chennai is attempting to get back on its feet. Rehabilitation efforts are underway in the city, although it could be a while before the city gets back to where it was before the floods.

We at Sankalp intend to raise funds towards the rehabilitation efforts and, with your assistance in this regard, make a small difference. Currently we are talking to NGOs in the Chennai area that we have worked with before to identify appropriate rehabilitation projects that we can contribute to.

How can you donate towards these efforts?

Please make the check payable to Sankalp

If you wish to donate, please mail your checks to


Iowa State Memorial Union,

West Student Office Space,

Ames, Iowa 50011


Else, please contact Viraj Muthye at 515-817-3895 or vrmuthye@iastate.edu, and some one from Sankalp can come and collect the check.



Please contact Viraj Muthye at 515-817-3895 or vrmuthye@iastate.edu, and some one from Sankalp can come and collect the check.


Online – Its fast and easy

All donations through ISU Foundation are tax-deductable

You can donate to Sankalp using ISU Foundation website, safely and securely, without the hassles of mailing checks. Please follow the step by step instructions given below:

1. Visit the website www.foundation.iastate.edu

2. Click on “Make a Gift” in the upper right corner.

3. Provide your name and email.

4. Specify the amount you want to donate in “Donation Information”, in the box labeled as “Gift Amount”. The option for recurring gift or splitting into multiple payments can be chosen here.

5. Only after finishing step 4, under “Gift Designations”, select “I want to choose where my gift is designated”. A popup box will appear titled “Donation areas”.

6. Scroll to the bottom of popup box, where it states “Other Areas”, and select “Other Area – I will add my specific gift information in the ‘Notes/Instructions’ box below”.

7. Then, click on “Continue” of the popup box.

8. The “Notes/Instructions” box has an area where you should type in – “I want to donate the specified amount to SANKALP – Flood”.

9. Click on “Next” and complete the payment information on next page(s).


If you donate online, please help us keep a track of the total donated amount, by filling out this very quick google sheet :


We hope to send the money at the earliest (no later than January 30th) and will keep you updated on what and where the money is being directed to.


Please contact us for more details:

Viraj       (515-817-3895 , vrmuthye@iastate.edu) 
Srikanth (515-708-5083,  srikanth@iastate.edu)
Varsha   (515-735-6480,  vgaonkar@iastate.edu)


Looking forward to doing our bit from the Ames community for our countrymen back in India.


Organizations and Volunteer groups that can be donated towards:

1. Bhumi


Bhumi is an organization that has been the forefront of many educational initiatives in Chennai and is comprised of youth volunteers who are familiar with every aspect of Chennai. Sankalp at Iowa State University has also worked with Bhumi in the past, using funds from their patrons to help fund many of Bhumi’s innovative initiatives.

2. RJ Balaji and actor Siddharth who have been at the forefront of all relief efforts from DAY 1… In the absence of an appropriate government response they have been inspiring thousands of youth volunteers to carry out the unprecedented in relief efforts. Funds will now be used for REHABILITATION as the city tries to recover from the devastation from scratch. They have also reached out to other flood affected areas such as Cuddalore.
Donations to ChennaiMicroFund can be made via facilities such as xoom.com or if your bank has an international money transfer mechanism.
RJ Balaji’s twitter feed for constant updates:


Further information on the same regarding their extensive volunteer network:


3. Shruthi Ravikumar, a close friend of Guru Prasad, an alumni of ISU and a member of Sankalp has started a Milaap campaign. They initially began as a campaign to provide relief in terms of food. But are in touch with NGOs that are carrying out rehabilitation. Updates are provided on the campaign page regularly.


4. Cuddalore Flood Relief – A coastal town near Chennai that has also been affected badly


The above is a YouCaring campaign run by a few people here in the US who’ve specifically raised the funds for Cuddalore.
We will update this if we believe even more organizations can be verified for the flood relief measures.


Jammu and Kashmir Relief Fund Update

Student organizations at Iowa State-Hindu YUVA, ISA and Sankalp coordinated efforts for donations from generous patrons and student members towards the Kashmir Flood Relief Fund. A total amount of 1,32,000 INR were routed through Sankalp to be transferred to the PMNRF. A substantial delay in this overseas transfer occurred due to technical protocols. Sankalp reached out to one of their previous beneficiary NGOs, Gopali Youth Welfare Society (GYWS) in West Bengal to complete this fund transfer. Follow-ups through emails and monitoring were maintained till Sankalp received confirmation of a successful transfer to the PMNRF. The PMNRF fund is set-up to direct monetary resources towards disaster relief efforts in unfortunate calamities like the recent Floods in Kashmir and Cyclone HudHud in Andhra Pradesh.

We apologize for the delay in updating our generous patrons with a confirmation of the funds having transferred successfully. We also sincerely thank you for your patience and support through the process. We have documented the process chronologically (see below) and also designed standard process guidelines for any future fund transfer in the event of disaster relief campaigns. We would happy to share these guidelines/ resources with other organizations if needed. Once again, we thank you for your generosity, patience and support with the process.

Sankalp – PMNRF funds transfer timeline

September – 2014 – Appeal for collecting funds for J&K relief fund to be donated to PMRF sent to patrons

October – 2014 – Collation of funds collected (Amount total 1,32,000 INR)

November – 2014 – First attempt to transfer funds to PMNRF

November – 2014 – Decision to contact other sources in order to donate to PMNRF

November – 2014 – NGOs ( with previous history with Sankalp/ Hindu YUVA) shortlisted for transfer of


November – 2014 – Decision to contact Indian Embassy (Chicago)

December – 2014 – Details received from Indian Embassy (Chicago) on protocols for overseas transfers

December – 2014 – Campus Accounting Office (Sankalp Account at ISU) cannot issue check payable to

“Indian embassy” or “PMNRF” due to federal laws

January – 2015 – Contacted GYWS for transferring funds to PMRF

January – 2015 – Funds routed to GYWS, West Bengal

February – 2015 – Confirmation of funds transferred from GYWS to PMNRF