IASF was founded in October 1999 after a devastating cyclone hit the eastern coasts of Odisha, taking lives of almost 15,000 people and displacing more than 500,000 people from their homes. The Odiya (people of Odisha) diaspora from California, USA came forward and sprung into action by collecting funds to assist the people affected by this calamity. However, we could not rest on our laurels and continued the benevolent activities long beyond the memories of the cyclone to officially form the group called “Oriya Sevaks”. Starting from 2001, this group expanded its work beyond Odisha and hence, in 2007, we registered with IRS (under section 501C) as a charitable organization under the name of IASF: Indo-American Sevaks Foundation.
The primary mission of IASF is to develop and improve the quality of life of rural people in India through education. IASF has so far delivered and completed its projects with a success rate of over 90%. The organization operates with minimal overhead and is fully transparent to the public. Although IASF has successfully completed projects in many different areas, it is currently focusing on health and education of rural people and young children. Many of the projects involve infrastructure improvement or facility enhancement for various schools in India to mitigate the harsh conditions that the children face including extreme heat, dearth of safe drinking water, leaky roofs, etc.. The goal of IASF is to provide a not-for-profit social/volunteer platform to enable Non-resident Odiyas (NROs) to contribute for the development of Odisha and execute projects in their localities in Odisha.
Apart from doing projects in India, IASF has responded to various calamities across the globe; some of these include Indian Ocean Tsunami in 2007 ($10,000), hurricane Katrina disaster relief in 2005 ($5,000), Haiti earthquake relief in 2012 ($5,000), Japan tsunami relief in 2011 ($10,000) etc. Since its establishment, IASF has funded various projects with a net worth between $350,000-$500,000. In addition, IASF takes part in local charitable activities such as food sorting in Second Harvest and many more. Most recently, IASF has launched the IASF youth wing to instill community involvement among next generation young Odias as well as to encourage teens to participate in local community activities and to connect with and contribute to the development in Odisha.
IASF has collaborated with many other charitable organizations, such as Red Cross and IDRF to support various projects. Many of those projects were funded with Red Cross as the preferred partner. In addition, IASF has worked with a myriad of different organizations in India to execute these projects.
IASF has been consistently executing multiple projects every year and helping many under-privileged children in India. IASF members believe in giving back to the society and to their mother land that helped them achieve success. IASF encourages members to join the group to contribute for the development of India, and Odisha in particular.