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  • 19 Oct 2023 10:59 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Sewa International launched a fundraiser campaign in the US to help people affected by the recent terrorist attacks in Israel.

    Houston, October 18, 2023 — Sewa International expresses deep concern for the people affected by the recent terrorist attacks in Israel. Our philosophy, grounded in the age-old Hindu traditions, promotes the well-being of all and the sanctity of life.

    We stand in solidarity with the innocent victims of these attacks and offer our thoughts and prayers to grieving families. As a volunteer-led non-profit with experience serving in almost 40 disasters worldwide, Sewa understands the devastating impact of senseless attacks on societies and families. We urge all groups involved in this conflict to protect innocent lives and avoid further violence.

    Sewa International has started a fundraising campaign to support the victims and their families affected by this tragic and heart-wrenching situation. We appeal to all Americans to generously donate to Sewa to help the relief efforts in Israel and be a part of the healing process: or 

    About Sewa International

    Sewa International ( is a 501 (c) (3) Hindu faith-based charitable nonprofit that works in the areas of disaster recovery, education, and development. Sewa has 43 Chapters across the USA and serves regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin.

  • 18 Jun 2023 11:31 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Houston, (June 18, 2023): Sewa International's Houston team in association with Fort Bend Independent School District (ISD) organized a food donation drive on June 3rd at the Hodges Bend Middle School. The drive was funded by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) grant awarded to Fort Bend County. Fort Bend ISD has about 80,000 students and about 51 percent of them are economically disadvantaged. Students &their families, benefiting from the food distribution, were contacted prior to the drive.

    More than 50 volunteers, including Sewa summer interns, helped in packing 13,000 pounds of food items into 800 bags on the Memorial Day weekend at the Shri Krishna Vrundavana Temple, Houston. The food items included beans, rice, pasta, pasta sauce, cereal, and vegetables.

    “I found a lot of joy in packaging the food. It was hard work the entire time, but we were able to pack 800 bags in about three hours. We did not know each other, but as we continued to work together, we all started to talk and laugh a little. I genuinely love packaging food as it brings me happiness,” said Saloni Singh, one of the Sewa summer Interns.

    Four elementary school campuses were invited to participate on the day of the drive. Judge J. Christian Becerra of Texas 434th District Court and Lydia Chavez-Garcia, Director for Collaborative Communities, volunteered along with over 20 volunteers from Sewa International.

    Food was also delivered to Shared Dreams on June 8, 2023, during the “Brighter Bites” distribution. About 480 students were assisted through this food distribution: 46 percent were African American, 37 percent Hispanic, 10 percent Caucasian, and 8 percent Asian. Besides this event, some 260 families were supported through a food donation to Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Rosenberg, TX.

  • 4 Apr 2023 8:25 AM | Sewa International (Administrator)


    ATLANTA, April 3, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Thousands of people from all walks of life threw colors at each other, turning the entire fairgrounds into one massive kaleidoscope of colors in the town of Cumming, GA. The 16th annual Holi celebration, hosted by Sewa International, Atlanta Chapter, on Saturday, March 11, drew large crowds from Atlanta's suburbs, making it a unique and joyful celebration. Holi is a major Hindu festival of colors that marks the dawn of the Spring season. People from all ethnic, religious, and social backgrounds participated cheerfully in the Holi extravaganza.

    Freshly prepared Indian snacks and spicy Indian street food, a mix of foot-tapping Bollywood music, eclectic performances by renowned Atlanta dance teams, and a warm sunny day created the perfect festive ambiance. Sewa made available lab-tested and safe color powders at the venue. Buoyed by the balmy weather, laughter, and clouds of color around them, people sprinkled colors on each other. Faces and bodies covered by different shades of pink, green, red, and orange, people danced and roamed the Cumming fairground mirroring their agile and boundless spirits.

    Over two hundred Sewa Atlanta volunteers, including many high school students and senior citizens, meticulously planned and organized the event to ensure all participants enjoyed the festivities. The musical performances by the Gaudiya Vaishnava Association and DJ Shaan and his team added melody to the riot of colors. Masters of ceremony, Vidushi Gupta and Viswanath Koppaka, amused the audience with their humor. Many teenagers and their parents cooked and distributed food, directed traffic, and cleaned the venue after the event.

    Referring to the success of the event, Srikanth Gundavarapu, President of the Sewa Atlanta chapter, said Sewa could deliver a memorable Holi event due to the support of all volunteers, sponsors, partner organizations, media partners, and the various divisions of the Forsyth County government and the City of Cumming and its police department. He said the event provided Sewa with an opportunity to raise awareness in the community about its focus on disaster recovery and rehabilitation, family services programs, and serving the local communities. The crowd at the event was a tremendous testimonial to people's trust in Sewa volunteers. It inspired Sewa to do more and make the world a better place for all to live, Gundavarapu said.

    Sewa's partner organizations, Isha Foundation, Art of Living, Hindu American Political Action Committee (HAPAC), Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS), Gaudiya Vaishnava Association (GVA), The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), Ponce de Leon, Forsyth County Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) Atlanta, Uttar Pradesh North America Association (UPNAA), BrightRing Foundation, Chinmaya Mission Alpharetta, Ekal Atlanta, Vaasi Foundation USA, Siddheswari Seva Inc., and many more joined in the celebrations.

    About Sewa International
    Sewa International ( is a 501 (c) (3) Hindu faith-based charitable nonprofit that works in the areas of disaster recovery, education, and development. Sewa has 43 Chapters across the USA and serves regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin.

    Vidyasagar Tontalapur – 1 - 720-526-9939
    Viswanath Koppaka – 1- 404-304-0563

  • 22 Feb 2023 8:56 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    HOUSTON, Feb. 22, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Sewa International has raised $60,000 to help Turkey and Syria earthquake victims till now. Sewa has $45,000 through its website and $15,000 in its Facebook fundraising campaign. Volunteers from Sewa International's partner organization, Food For Life (FFL), have started relief work in the earthquake-hit areas, serving about 800-1200 meals daily in villages near Antakya, the capital of Hatay Province.

    Also Published in

    FFL is an International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) initiative and the world's most extensive vegetarian food distribution program serving millions of meals daily, serving people in 65 countries.

    In addition, Sewa Houston's AmeriCorps team organized a donation drive on February 18 and collected food, clothes, hygiene items, tents, hand warmers, shoes, and baby necessities. The team is working with the National Association of Christian Churches (NACC) to deliver more than 200 boxes containing these items to Turkey and Syria through a Turkish Airlines flight.

    Meanwhile, FFL volunteers from Hungary and Turkey drove a giant truck filled with cooking equipment, rice, beans, fresh vegetables, 5,000 liters of water, and other essential supplies and arrived in Antakya on February 12. They worked with the local community to identify Harbiye and two other adjoining villages to start their relief work, according to Swadesh Katoch, Sewa International's Vice President for Disaster Relief.

    According to Katoch, the Turkish Ministry of Interior's Disaster and Emergency Management Presidenty (AFAD) has requested FFL to serve in Hatay. Three FFL volunteers from Turkey and four Hungarian FFL cooks, including the FFL Director from Budapest, drove about 15 hours from Istanbul to Antakya.

    "ISKCON Turkey Food for Life is incredibly grateful for the generous support of Sewa USA. Our partnership with Sewa is providing much needed relief to the people who have been left with nothing. Sewa USA was one of the very first organizations to get actively involved in offering funds to keep the wheels rolling," said Caitanya Chandra Das, coordinator of Turkey earthquake relief efforts from ISKCON's Food For Life.

    "We are working with Sewa Canada, Sewa Europe, and ISKCON's FFL to assist the earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria. We endeavor to provide relief to people during disasters and work with them to help them rebuild their lives. With support from our donors, partners, and volunteers, Sewa can make a real impact, as it has done so in response to many other disasters worldwide," Arun Kankani, Sewa International's President said. He appealed for donations to help Turkish and Syrian communities in need.

    About Sewa International
    Sewa International ( is a 501 (c)(3) Hindu faith-based charitable nonprofit that works in the areas of disaster recovery, education, and development. Sewa has 43 Chapters across the USA and serves regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin.

    Vidyasagar Tontalapur – 1 - 720-526-9939
    Viswanath Koppaka – 1- 404-304-0563

  • 11 Nov 2022 8:34 AM | Sewa International (Administrator)


    HOUSTON, Nov. 11, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Sewa International has contributed $10,000 to Sewa Kenya towards drought relief efforts in Kenya. It has also started a social media campaign to raise $100,000 for food distribution.

    Also Published in

    In the first phase, Sewa will distribute food kits to 3,000 families. Volunteers from Sewa's partner organizations in the country have been distributing food kits to families hit hard by the drought in Kathiani and Kangundo areas in Machakos county. Soon, they will start providing food and other essential supplies in the Makindu area.

    Sewa's partner organizations, Bharatiya Swayamsevak Sangh (BSS), Kenya, and the Hindu Council of Kenya (HCK), lead these relief efforts. They also provide clean water, medical care, and educational facilities in Kenya's remote villages. Volunteers from the Hindu Religious Service Center, Mombasa, Kenya, and Premchandbhai Foundation, Nairobi, are also helping in these relief efforts.

    Kenya's National Drought Management Authority (NDMA) attributes drought to four successive failed rainy seasons. According to the agency, an estimated 4.35 million people suffer severe hunger and need humanitarian assistance. Between October 2021 and March 2022, over 1.5 million livestock, particularly cattle and sheep, died. The agency says that in 2022, the drought situation worsened in 20 of the 23 counties in Kenya's Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL). The agency also said over 755,000 children under five and about 103,000 pregnant women are malnourished. By some estimates, nearly 1,500 people die of hunger each day in drought-hit East Africa.

    "Each food kit Sewa distributes costs about $20 (2,000 Kenyan shilling). We are requesting people in the US to donate to help people in Kenya. Sewa needs additional funds to immunize pregnant women and children against diseases that spread during the famine," Sewa's Vice President for Disaster Relief, Swadesh Katoch, said.

    "Sewa provides maize, beans, flour, freshwater, and cooking oil in each food kit. We also supply Unimex, a nutritious fortified food recommended by the World Food Program, to children in over 700 schools and health centers. We are also running capacity-building programs for low-income communities to help them become self-reliant," Vipul Shah, a volunteer from Sewa Kenya said.

    About Sewa International
    Sewa International ( is a 501 (c)(3) Hindu faith-based charitable nonprofit that works in the areas of disaster recovery, education, and development. Sewa has 43 Chapters across the USA and serves regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin.

    Vidyasagar Tontalapur – 1 - 720-526-9939
    Viswanath Koppaka – 1- 404-304-0563

  • 13 Oct 2022 5:42 AM | Sewa International (Administrator)

    Houston, TX (October 9, 2022): Sewa International has released $25,000 to help Hurricane Ian victims in Florida. Sewa volunteers have been distributing drinking water, food, and other essential supplies in Fort Myers Beach, Sarasota and other areas impacted by the hurricane. They are working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to aid the affected people.

    Sewa volunteers from Orlando and Tampa collected food, water, and other materials and delivered them to the FEMA help centers. They also supplied groceries to the Fort Myers Hindu Temple. Since the hurricane hit the area, the temple has been providing over 500 hot meals daily to physicians, nurses, and people in relief shelters. So far, the temple has served over 3,000 meals and has helped more than 400 families.

    According to local officials, Hurricane Ian, which made landfall on September 28, has caused over 137 fatalities. Considered one of the deadliest hurricanes to hit Florida, Ian has caused an estimated $28-63 billion damage, primarily from flooding.

    Sewa's Orlando team on Sunday prepared sandwiches for families affected by the hurricane and delivered non-perishable food items to a Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) center in Clearwater, FL. They also and cleaned debris at Daytona Beach and supplied hundreds of pounds of food to Allen Chapel AME Church in town. To fund its Hurricane Ian relief and resettlement work, Sewa has started a Facebook fundraiser ( with the goal of raising $100,000.

    "Once the roads opened, Sewa volunteers supplied essential items to people stuck without electricity and basic supplies. Our volunteers in Tampa provided cereals, granola bars, sleeping mats, air mattresses, and other items to a veterans group in Fort Myers on Friday, October 7. Sewa is serving people who have lost their homes to flooding and undergoing tremendous stress. It will be a long way to recovery for these families," Sewa's Disaster Response Coordinator & Project Manager, Rashmi Singh, said.

    "We are working with local Hindu temples and other Indian American organizations in Florida to assess the local needs. Over the weekend, about 25 Sewa volunteers joined the local Crisis Cleanup Team to visit Volusia County. Many of the county's residents need help with de-clogging the gutters. Another Sewa team is visiting Dunbar and Harlem Heights with essential supplies. The situation is alarming, and we see a huge need for immediate and long-term assistance. We request the community to donate to Sewa to help Hurricane Ian victims get back on track," Achalesh Amar, Sewa's Director of Disaster Relief, said.  

    About Sewa International

    Sewa International ( is a 501 (c)(3) Hindu faith-based charitable nonprofit that works in the areas of disaster recovery, education, and development. Sewa has 43 Chapters across the USA and serves regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin.

  • 4 Oct 2022 12:14 AM | Sewa International (Administrator)

    Sewa International help reached hurricane Ian victims in Fort Myers. Today, roads were opened and our team in Orlando drove relief material to Hindu Temple of Fort Myers. Tomorrow, our Tampa team will take help from Tampa.

    View Gallery

  • 22 Sep 2022 2:57 AM | Sewa International (Administrator)

    Sewa Women’s Championship 2022 - Cricket & Kho-Kho sporting events were held on Sept 18th at Fowler Park Cumming, GA

    Let me start by saying what an eventful day! The day started early for the sewa volunteers, coordinating and setting up for this tournament. Dr. Syamala Erramilli along with her husband Bob Erramilli, Johns creek City Council member was the guests of Honor and was accompanied by Vikas Arora Sewa Leader. The event was inaugurated with the invocation to Lord Ganesha’s prayers and the traditional lighting of lamps. Dr. Syamala emphasized on how important it is for women to stay active and motivated so that they can be good role models for their children. She also talked about how staying active helps us with endorphins which in turn helps us stay at bay with depression. She appreciated Sewa for conducting such events, as otherwise people would be cooped up in their homes, binging web series or movies.

    We had a wonderful response to our cricket championship ably conducted by match referee Vijay Vaghela, a total of 6 teams participated, ATL Strikers, Crickootam, Ferocious Feathers, Firebirds, Magic Makers, and Wildbrooke Warriors. There were some tough competitive and super over matches played by these amazing women with full sportswomen ship and enthusiasm. The Cricket Championship was won by the Firebirds team, in 2nd came Crickootam, 3rd ATL Strikers, and in 4th Wildbrooke Warriors.

    Complimentary lunch and drinks were provided to many participants under the able guidance of Amaresh Parvathaneni and Murali Rajgopalan. Our sponsor was SlayRX, the sports drink maker , whose contributions would go towards the S.H.E program( , the objective of this program is to create livelihood for economically weaker and vulnerable women through market driven skill development training as well as personality development and mental awareness.)

    This was followed by the afternoon session being graced by the presence of Mrs. Raj Razdan, who also highlighted the importance of women’s wellbeing and staying active. She emphasized that parents should empower young girls to make their own decisions and live their dreams from a young age so they can become strong and independent members of the society. She congratulated all the women who came forward and participated in the event and encouraged them to continue to do so.

    In Kho-Kho, four teams Mountain Crest Challengers, Ferocious Feathers, Lakshmi Bai, and Wildbrooke Warriors participated ably conducted by match referee Vishal Shah. The kho-Kho championship was won by Mountain Crest Challengers, in 2nd came Ferocious Feathers, in 3rd Wildbrooke Warriors and 4th was Lakshmi Bai.

    Overall, it was a successful event and the participants were happy and expressed interest in participating in such future sporting events. A total of over 200 volunteer hours have been spent for the event. Event organizing team led by Neetu Chauhan, Pallavi Panthri, Vani Gaddam, Usha Palagiri, Garima Saini put in their best effort and pulled off a successful event! Thanks to Vijai G, Sewa Sports coordinator for guiding the team, Chanchal for coordinating Teen volunteers, Prakash Srivastava for technical and marketing help. Shobit Panthari and Raghav Tavva for the amazing pictures and videos which capture the memories for a long time to come.

    By Usha Palagiri
    Sewa Sports Group
    Sewa International - Atlanta Chapter

  • 13 Jun 2022 10:38 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Houston, TX (June 13, 2022):  Sewa International Houston Chapter’s AmeriCorps program has been featured in the Partner Spotlight section by OneStar Foundation in its 2021 annual report. The recently released report with the theme “Rising to the Challenge” carried a detailed report on Sewa’s AmeriCorps program celebrating resilience of Texas communities addressing the COVID-19 pandemic and Winter Storm Uri. The OneStar Foundation administers the AmeriCorps program in Texas.

    The president & CEO of OneStar Foundation, Chris Bugbee, has sent Sewa a special note of appreciation. The annual report mentions that “As a haven for immigrants and refugees from around the globe, the city of Houston has experienced tremendous growth, which has translated into a steady increase in demand for Sewa’s services, especially in the areas of disaster relief and education. Many of the families served by Sewa are living at or below the poverty line and lack the resources and English language proficiency to thrive.”

    The report quoted, Carole Juárez, Sewa AmeriCorps Program Manager, on how Sewa and OneStar work in tandem to serve the people in need. “Leveraging volunteer service showed us what we were capable of as an organization, but the demands exacted on our force of affiliate volunteers put our aspirations for greater capacity in sharp relief. We saw a synergy between AmeriCorps’ culture of ’getting things done’ and Sewa’s core belief that ‘together we serve better.’ Partnering with OneStar offered the key to Sewa’s growth in Texas.”

    During the COVID-19 pandemic, Sewa AmeriCorps team worked on disaster preparedness. “By tapping into the broad reach and local expertise of its new AmeriCorps members, Sewa was able to promote readiness more effectively with messaging targeted to the most vulnerable populations. Sewa AmeriCorps members organized workshops and health fairs to address vaccine hesitancy and promoted mobile vaccination clinics. Ahead of the record-breaking freeze in February 2021, the team provided Spanish-language information sessions to people who had never dealt with extreme cold. By the end of their first year, Sewa AmeriCorps members had assisted nearly 700 individuals in increasing their disaster readiness. They were also instrumental in recruiting and managing volunteers for Sewa’s food drives, which each served more than a thousand families,” the report said.

    Lauding the impact of Sewa’s work on education, the report stated, “through the Alief Independent School District and the organization’s after-school academies, Sewa engaged 12 AmeriCorps members to provide individualized support to students— many who are new immigrants facing language and acculturation barriers. The focused attention of Sewa AmeriCorps members has had a decided impact in the classroom, with 90 percent of students served showing academic improvement and 81 percent demonstrating increased attendance and class engagement. In addition to working with youth, AmeriCorps members also work with the families of students to provide a more stable home environment.”

    “With funding from OneStar Foundation, we started Sewa AmeriCorps program in fall 2020 with 18 members. The program has been a phenomenal success and Sewa is able to serve the neediest people of Houston by promoting vaccine awareness and distributing groceries, milk and other essentials during the pandemic. Sewa is now expanding this program by adding another 42 additional members to the team,” Arun Kankani, President, Sewa International said. 

    In the OneStar report, Nathan Murphy, a volunteer at O’Donnell Middle School and Samiksha Deme, a disaster preparedness outreach specialist, voiced their happiness about being part of the Sewa AmeriCorps team and what they have been able to accomplish. “It has been such a blessing to support students and administrators and teachers right now as we’re all trying to figure out what education looks like,” said Nathan. “We’ve had such a great opportunity to meet different communities of Houston. “Being a part of the team has been such a great way for me to not only develop my own career interests and prepare myself for the next stage of my education, but  also has taught me so much about what service means and how to make an impact in both small and big communities.” Samiksha said.

  • 31 May 2022 10:10 AM | Sewa International (Administrator)

    New Delhi, May 2022: Aiming to create a progressive long-term impact in India, Sewa International a global non-profit organization, launches Sewa Fellowship to support individuals, societal leaders, and organizations aligned with the philosophy of serving India. The fellowship programme is an opportunity for young and dynamic individuals to bring positive changes at the grassroots level for nation-building.

    The fellowship launch hosted at India International Centre, New Delhi, was attended by dignitaries who have pioneered in exploring new methods and exemplified processes for serving communities including, Shri Shyam Parande (the General Secretary of Sewa International), Dr. R Balasubramaniam (Member at Capacity Building Commission), Phoolbasan Bai (Renowned Social worker and Padma Shri Awardee), Dr. Mamidala Jagadesh Kumar (Chairman at University Grants Commission), Gauranga Das (Divisional Director at ISKCON), Venkatesh Murthy (Founder and Chief Mentor at Youth for Seva), Ambassador Virendra Gupta (Former IFS) , Dr. Ram Kakani (Director at IIM Raipur), and Prof. Ajay Dubey from JNU and other renowned leaders from different walks of life.

    Inviting applications from across India, the fellowship has a three-stage selection process. The first stage includes sharing the application with an essay writing or video-based essay defining the statement of purpose. The second stage will assess the candidate’s problem solving approach, and curiosity and humility through field assignments and personal conversation. The final selection is based on the individual’s behaviour/psychometric analysis, collaborative working attitude, and rigour for community work.

    The 23-month immersive programme encompasses an extensive curriculum with a core emphasis on imparting knowledge, skills, and temperament training. It includes project management, research and development, monitoring and evaluation of live projects, and learning best practices to create an impact on society. The fellows will also be trained in skills such as critical thinking, systems thinking, eco-centered design, storytelling, leadership, sewa bhaav, communication, and fundraising, etc.

    Shri Shyam Parande Ji, General Secretary, Sewa International, said, “We are delighted to celebrate Sewa International’s 25th Anniversary. In the initial 12 years, Sewa International worked with other institutions and later started its initiatives for the upliftment of society. He reiterated Swami Vivekananda’s message that a few heart-whole, sincere, and energetic men and women can do more in a year than a mob in a century. The world needs more young leaders to solve future problems. In his words, now is the time that young men and women must come forward and take the challenges of contemporary India and contribute to make India a global power. We operate on the ethos ‘neki kar darya me daal’, and work relentlessly to spread this message. Sewa Fellowship is a 100-week journey that will be led by experts in the field of social development. Under this, fellows will work with India’s most impactful NGOs and work on their development projects. We are looking for self-motivated individuals who want to devote their lives to building a new and better India.”

    Chief Guest at the event, Dr. Mamidala Jagadesh Kumar, Chairman of the UGC, said, “There is a rampant need for fellowships in India to bring changes at the grassroots level. The Sewa Fellowship will not only identify problems in the social fabric but also help find sustainable solutions. It is a much-needed initiative that will positively accelerate development across the country.”

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