RPI was founded in 2007 by volunteers who had earlier been involved in Tsunami relief. Their desire was to continue charity work, working with integrity and accountability to establish effective projects especially among marginalised children, particularly female. After completing some Tsunami projects, the founding members were asked to help with the Claretian Mercy Home which rescues unwanted baby girls in the western Madurai district of Tamil Nadu, an area that has long been plagued with infanticide. They have now launched several new projects in the area under the SHE banner to help combat female infanticide and foeticide, and to provide educational opportunities for disadvantaged children. See Projects.


RPI has a 'hands-on, grass roots' philosophy, so that we stay in touch with the needs, and closely oversee our work and projects. This helps to maximise efficiency and effectiveness, as well as ensure honesty at all stages of our work. We have a close contact with donors and supporters, and keep them updated with our progress; they have the satisfaction of seeing where their money goes and appreciating its effect.

Our Team

Suresh Ambat, managing trustee

Suresh Ambat

Director and founder of Building Blocks Schools for slum children, Bangalore. With his vast experience with an educational charity he brings professionalism and vision. Our expert on running schools.

Susanna Turcotte, Board Member

Mary Susanna Turcotte

Founding Member, Education Advisor, Curriculum Development

Celestina Cavinder

Celestina Cavinder

Registered doula. A woman of compassion who contributes much to the Trust.

Advisory Board Members

  • L. Jesse Joseph Tincher, Executive Director
  • Adrian Cavinder, Highschool Principle, Bangalore

Guiding Principles

Adapted from the code of ethics and conduct for NGOs  by the World Association of Non-Governmental Organisations.

Responsibility, Service and Cooperation

  • Relief Projects India (RPI) and its employees conduct its activities for the sake of others, whether for the public at large or a particular segment of the public, without personal self-interest.
  • Assistance is given regardless of the race, creed or nationality of the recipients and without adverse distinction of any kind.
  • Trust money must not be misused for selfish purposes and all public assets are to be treated with utmost seriousness, as a sacred public trust.
  • Assistance will not be used to further a particular political or religious standpoint.
  • RPI exhibits a responsible and caring attitude towards the environment in all of its activities.
  • RPI strives to maintain ethical, cooperative relationships with other NGOs, and partner where possible and appropriate for the sake of the greater public good. 
  • We are willing to work beyond borders of politics, religion, culture, race and ethnicity, within the limits of the organizing documents and with organizations and individuals that share common values and objectives.

human rights and dignity

 RPI promotes the values of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. As the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states, "All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, are endowed with reason and conscience, and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood." Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 1
The family is the fundamental natural group unit of society promoting human rights and human dignity. Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 16

  • RPI recognises that all people are born free and equal in dignity and seeks to promote the rights of the downtrodden, disadvantaged, and   marginalized populations, considering specifically those marginalized by their economic status, race, ethnicity, religion, age, marital status, gender or caste. RPI places special emphasis on promoting the rights of women and female children, and the physically and mentally challenged.
  • Our activities should not violate any person's fundamental human rights, with which each person is endowed.
  • RPI requires a high standard of morality from its employees and volunteers, especially in interactions with women and children.
  • We endeavour to be sensitive to the moral values, religion, customs, traditions, and culture of the communities we serve.
  • RPI respects the integrity of families and supports family-based life.


  • RPI holds sacred the trust placed in us not only by donors, but also by the people it serves, partner organizations, and the public at large.
  • RPI follows thorough accounting procedures and requires absolute honesty and integrity in all financial dealings.
  • RPI seeks to use its funds efficiently and judiciously in a manner that will bring the maximum benefit to the people it serves.
  • RPI fulfils its obligations under the laws of India and is strongly opposed to corruption, bribery, and other financial improprieties or illegalities.
  • RPI has a policy for staff and volunteers to confidentially bring evidence to the governing body of any misconduct of anyone associated with our work. We take immediate corrective action when any wrong-doing is discovered.
  • RPI is organized and operated as a not-for-profit organization. Any surplus that is generated through its operations is to be utilized solely to help the organization fulfil its mission and objectives. No part of the net earnings of the Trust is to  benefit   the directors, officers, members or employees of the organization, or to any other private persons, except that  RPI may provide reasonable compensation for services provided to the organization.
  • Staff members shall refrain from using their official position, either regular or volunteer, to secure special privilege, gain or benefit for themselves.
  • All activities of RPI are strictly non-political.