India Philanthropy Alliance Names Indian American Youth Essay Contest Winners for 2021
Rithani Saravanakumar won the top prize in the high school category. (LinkedIn photo)
India-West Staff Reporter
The India Philanthropy Alliance recently announced the winners of its 2021 Youth Essay competition.
Rithani Saravanakumar of Redmond, Washington, the winner of the high school competition, wrote about deregulation of India crop prices and its impact on the rural farming community. “We need to help small farmers ability to stay in business,” she said, adding, “too many have had to give up their farms and are being left behind.” She advocates for the development of a reliable infrastructure so that small farmers can produce, transport, and store their agricultural products, according to a press release.
Eisha Yadav of Redwood City, California, winner of the middle school competition, is passionate about setting up programs and community centers for the aging in India. “How can we ignore the needs of the population that helped raise us?” she asks, as she advocates for day care centers to be developed in India so that seniors receive social and emotional support in addition to basic health services.
The runner-up in the high school competition, Diya Patel of Woodland Park, New Jersey (11th grade), advocated for equitable education for India’s rural youth. Chinmayi Joshi, the middle school runner up from Basking Ridge, New Jersey, advocated for advancing services to disabled people, particularly those living in remote and impoverished regions of the country.
Finalists include Aniruddh Marella of Frisco, Texas; Eshwar Venkataswamy of Athens, Pennsylvania; and Jibraan Rahman of Plymouth, Michigan; in the high school category; and Arhaan Iyer of Dallas, Texas; Eesha Jain of Seattle, Washington; and Riya Pharsiyawar of Danbury, Connecticut, in the middle school category.
Now in its second year, the competition has brought dedicated and talented youth together with leading philanthropic organizations in the hope of becoming a lifelong commitment to advancing development and poverty reduction programs in India, said a press release.
The winners of the 2021 Youth Essay Competition will be celebrated at a special online event Nov. 10.
During the event, winners will present their ideas to philanthropists, business leaders, nonprofit staff, parents and friends of competition participants, and others.
Winners, runners-up and finalists will be introduced, and the winners will be interviewed by Mona Shah, one of the judges for the competition and a representative of The Sarva Mangal Family Trust, the contest sponsor. The runners-up will also be interviewed by Maher Adoni, the winner of the 2020 high school competition.