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About Us

BIRDS International longs to see a world without hunger, poverty, or injustice.

Our Story:
Bharati Integrated Rural Development Society (BIRDS) is a grassroots non-governmental organization which aims to meet the expressed needs of the impoverished, underprivileged and excluded in Andhra Pradesh, a state in southern India.  BIRDS was born through the vision of Paul Raja Rao, a well educated social reformer and ordained minister in the Church of South India who chose to return to his roots to transform the society from which he came.  Beginning with a small experimental organic farm in 1991 BIRDS operations have gradually grown to encompass a wide variety of social programs, the largest of which are its children’s home, English-medium school, and village health care worker training programs.  Paul Raja Rao, the founder of BIRDS, continues to serve as its Secretary and Executive Director, managing an ever-growing staff and administrating a series of social outreaches which reach tens of thousands of the poorest of the poor in southern India.

BIRDS International was born through the experience of several American college students, who were privileged enough to travel to BIRDS in 2006, 2007 and 2008.  Seeing the amazing impact of BIRDS’ targeted programs, the passion of Rev. Raja Rao, and the smiles on the faces of the children who for the first time had the possibility of a larger world opened to them left us no choice but to get involved.  At the request of the BIRDS staff we founded BIRDS International in 2007 as a means to raise support for and awareness of the work of BIRDS in India.

Our primary means of following through on this vision has been through our child sponsorship program, through which orphans, semi-orphans, and the extremely poor are given the opportunity of transforming their lives and communities through education.  For more on this program, please see our “About Sponsorship” page.

We hope in coming years to grow a larger base of support to help BIRDS in their wide variety of social programs, including their village health programs, social advocacy for Dalits and domestic workers, and organic farming training methods.  For more information on any of these programs, or if you’re interested in supporting BIRDS in any of these areas, please e-mail us at support@birdsint.org

Mission:
BIRDS International exists to provide support to those ensnared in cycles of systemic hunger, poverty and social injustice through creating channels for donors, sponsors, and volunteers to connect with the victims of these cycles with a view to bringing transformative change and empowerment to their communities. BIRDS International achieves this aim through supporting our parent organization Bharati Integrated Rural Development Society (BIRDS) in Andhra Pradesh, India through fund-raising and awareness-building.

Guiding Principles:
•We will always strive first and foremost to use our resources to grow the programs they support not the administration of our organization.
•We will target our support for programs which have a maximum impact towards addressing the social problems in our mission statement.
•We recognize that we are only a small part of a larger movement in the fight against poverty.  We will therefore always strive to work together with all organizations and members of our community who share our passion and vision for addressing the needs of the poor and underprivileged.
•We will remain committed to being a source of both reliable and accurate information regarding issues surrounding our work.
•We will foster a community of equality and respect with the individuals and organizations with whom we work and support.
•We will aim, in partnership with our Indian counterparts, to develop new and innovative methods for reducing the burdens of the poor.
•We will have a bias for poor and marginalized people because only through their advancement can we realize our larger goals.