Raah's Story

In 2010, after selling her IT business, Sarika along with Girish, her husband and Mr. GR Thengdi, her father Sarika established the Raah Foundation. Raah means path in Hindi and this name came from their belief that a journey well traveled can lead to a desirable and happy destination. 

With perseverance and dedication the organization has grown from three founding members to a 55 strong team directly impacting the lives of 60,000 people.

Raah continues to march forward, changing one community, one village and one barren land at a time.

“I started Raah to use my background, education and privilege to address and solve some of the deep rooted problems faced by the rural communities so that they can lead a life of dignity and happiness!”

Dr. Sarika Kulkarni

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world, indeed, it has ever has.”

– Margarita Mead

Working with some of the poorest indigenous tribal communities along the Sahyadri mountain range, we recognize the need for a novel approach to address their intergenerational poverty, exacerbated by climate change. Despite previous efforts, only marginal improvements have been seen. With the looming threat of climate change potentially reversing any progress, a different, more creative strategy is imperative. Our approach involves multiple small steps, prioritizing climate resilience to help these communities adapt sustainably. By identifying root causes and building local leadership, we aim to empower these communities to drive the change they wish to see.

Change without Charity 

‘Philanthropic by design’, our foundation champions a ‘change without charity’ approach, emphasising community empowerment over mere aid. By deeply engaging with the residents and initiating collaborations with their ancestral wisdom, we ensure that every initiative is grounded in local needs and led by those it aims to benefit. This bottom-up strategy not only cultivates local ownership but also ensures sustainable change, transforming passive recipients into active participants in their development journey.