1,600 children die every day in India due to illnesses caused by lack of sanitation. Dasra’s latest research report, “Squatting Rights”, sponsored by Forbes Marshall, focuses on the lack of toilets in urban India and how the sanitation crisis can be best solved. Over four months, Dasra’s team reviewed 160 nonprofit organisations and identified nine promising and innovative organisations which have the potential for scale and impact towards urban sanitation. Towards this end, Dasra is now forming a Giving Circle that brings together philanthropists to pool funds and support an organisation over a sustained period of three years. Dasra also works hand on with the funded organisation during this period to effectively build capacity and enable it to reach the maximum number of people. Till date, Dasra has successfully closed four giving circles, channeling USD 3,000,000 of funding to four organisations in education, girl empowerment and malnutrition and has provided over 400 days of capacity building support.

The Giving Circle on Urban Sanitation is drawing attention from philanthropists across the globe. Over the last few weeks, Rati Forbes, Director, Forbes Marshall and Dasra’s senior leadership have been meeting high net worth individuals at events in Singapore, Houston, New York and London to create awareness about the issue. Individuals from the Indian diaspora as well as other foreign givers are currently joining the circle in individual capacities or are coming together as part of consortiums to collectively contribute USD 75,000 to form one vote on the circle. Similar events are also taking place locally to include philanthropists from India in the circle. The Urban Sanitation circle will be complete when ten votes are garnered and the members will likely vote in February 2013 to choose an organisation out of the nine profiled in Dasra’s report.

If you would like to join the Urban Sanitation Giving Circle, or would like to get more information about the same, please email radhika@ipf.org