10 NGOs which have revolutionised Healthcare in India

Doctors treating patients with NGO support
Doctors treating patients with NGO support

While it is difficult to know the exact number of NGOs in India, an exercise by the Indian Government found that at least 31 lakh NGOs are operational in our highly populated land of unity in diversity. We have a plethora of volunteers working to the effect of social causes such as education, animal rights, disaster relief and so on. This goes to show that social service and giving back to the community, quite in-built values in our culture, are feathers in our cap. Here, we cover the success stories of 10 NGOs in India that are putting forth outstanding work in the healthcare sector to empower people.

1. HelpAge India

A leading charity working for the disadvantaged elderly of India, HelpAge India has been active for over four decades. It has one of the largest mobile healthcare programs across India, providing free healthcare services to destitute elders.

Cataract surgeries are one of the cornerstones of this organisation. Cataract is a leading cause of blindness in India. HelpAge conducts more than 45,000 eye surgeries for the blind elderly across 21 states. This has helped over 9 lakh elders not only in restoration of eyesight but also going back to work as independent individuals.

HelpAge India also works towards providing palliative care to end-stage cancer patients. Pairing with several credible and competent hospitals, the organisation helps the poor elderly who cannot afford expensive medication for cancer.

HelpAge India has received several awards for his commendable contribution to society. It holds the Chairman’s Challenge Award, Times Social Impact Award and NGO Leadership & Excellence Award among several others.

2. CRY: Child Rights and You

CRY(Child Rights and You) was started by Rippan Kapur in 1979 with six of his friends and fifty rupees at his mother’s dining table. They had a dream of witnessing a day when every single Indian child would enjoy his/her rights such as survival, protection and development. Rippan, a young airline purser, hated seeing children work as servants. As a part of his school’s social service club, he helped street children with reading and writing. His motto was ‘What I can do, I must do.’ Today, CRY is chosen among the top 100 non-profits making a difference in the world.

CRY works towards several causes for children, one of them being malnutrition. It introduced kitchen gardens in anganwadis in Chhattisgarh to provide fresh and healthy food to children. This not only came as a boon to the underprivileged children but also accelerated the anganwadi workers in the same direction. This noble initiative of CRY has helped to see a decrease in the number of malnourished children by about 9-10%.

3. Lepra Society

As the name suggests, Lepra Society works to empower people affected with leprosy. It also fosters the healthcare of victims of lymphatic filariasis.

During the British colonial rule back in 1925, the British Empire Leprosy Relief Association (BELRA) started to bring leprosy to the attention of Indian citizens. Established in 1988 at Hyderabad, Lepra Society brought into focus the Indian Government’s National Leprosy Eradication Programme (NLEP). Today it operates across myriad states including Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Orissa, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Delhi.

Lepra Society had a systematic approach to dealing with the chronic disease. Its prime objective was to first identify its patients within an area via mass, contact and school surveys and then treats them with multi-drug therapy (MDT).

Lepra Society’s success encouraged them to extend a helping hand to victims of other maladies as well. Today they also work towards helping patients of malaria, tuberculosis and AIDS. They also help the Indian government in the National Anti-Malaria Programme (NAMP) and have extensive contribution to eye care and prevention of needless blindness.

4. Smile Foundation

Inspired by the philosophy of Peter Senge, the founder of ‘Society for Organisational Learning’, a group of young corporate professionals founded Smile Foundation in 2002. They began working from scratch to bring about a difference in the lives of underprivileged families and communities. Since urban slum dwellers lack the education to be aware of diseases and healthcare, they do not approach hospitals for checkups out of risking a day’s wages. Smile has a two-fold approach to tackle this problem. They first bring quality healthcare services within easy access of the needy. The second step is to promote healthcare awareness and encourage the poor to seek help.

Smile has a reach of 6 lakh children and families across 950 villages and slums of India. It has 200 projects on social causes like healthcare across 25 states of India.

5. Rural Health Care Foundation

Dentist treating a poor patient at RHCF Health Camp
Dentist treating a poor patient at RHCF Health Camp

Rural Health Care Foundation is an organisation founded by the late Arun Nevatia. It strives to provide low cost primary healthcare to the lowest strata of the socio-economic pyramid and is doing well in achieving its goals.

RHCF has a well laid out structure. Each clinic has four departments, namely, General Medicine, Optometry, Homeopathy and Dentistry. The patients are offered diagnosis and medicine supply for a week. The centre also arranges for cataract surgeries and cleft lip surgeries. The doctors are given free food and accommodation. Spectacles, wheel chairs, crutches and blankets are also distributed.

Rural Health Care Foundation been given a Special Consultative Status with the ECOSOC at the United Nations. Harvard Business School has also published a case study on the Rural Health Care Foundation.

6. Goonj

Goonj address the basic but neglected issues of the poor and values the traditional wisdom of the local people. It enables them to participate in Goonj’s solutions and gives out urban material as reward.

Goonj has several campaigns, one of them being ‘Share a Bite to your Heart’s Delight.’ It is a venture to encourage people to contribute daily essentials like rice, pulses and so on to the less fortunate. This is an innovative step towards solving the problem of food shortage and thus nutrition among the poor. Goonj has also taken considerable effort towards detaching the stigma associated with menstruation. It has helped college girls speak more boldly and openly about the issue and also involved many Rajasthani women in their menstrual hygiene initiative.

Functional for over two decades now, Goonj has won both national and international awards. The founder, Anshu Gupta, received the Ramon Magsaysay award for transforming giving as a developmental approach. Goonj has also won an ‘NGO of the Year’ award in a nationwide search & selection by Resource Alliance.

7. Udaan Welfare Foundation

Udaan Welfare Foundation works towards quality healthcare, keeping in mind a positive impact on the environment. It also works towards other causes that go hand-in-hand with healthcare, such as nutrition, taking sincere effort to achieve its ideals.

Several programs have been organised. Udaan carried out a dental health check in the Harikishan English Public School and taught 250 students the importance of the correct brushing techniques and oral care. They have also regularly provided medicines for Anugraha Children’s Home and Anugraha Vidya Mandir, Ambernath since 2008. Udaan also supplies monthly rations for daily breakfast for the 50 to 60 resident children there.

Udaan Welfare Foundation has worked successfully for six years in the regions of Mumbai and Thane. It continues to work towards the betterment and upliftment of the needy.

8. Deepalaya

Underpriviliged children enjoying a good meal at Deepalaya
Underpriviliged children enjoying a good meal at Deepalaya

The largest NGO in the national capital state of Delhi, Deepalaya has been functional for over three decades. It promotes self-reliance, with prime attention to women and children. It also works towards development of the urban and rural poor population.

Deepalaya runs the Community Health programme, a project working towards spreading awareness of preventive and promotive health. It reaches out to the poor and underprivileged through projects like the Chameli Dewan Memorial Rural Health & Mobile Clinic in Gusbethi. This comprises a mobile van that goes from village to village, fostering basic treatments and check-ups to almost 80,000 people in Mewat.

Deepalaya also is an NGO that has gained a lot of recognition for its work. It received the Indo American Corporate Excellence Award as the Best NGO for 2012. It also holds the NGO Transparency award by Guidestar India and many others.

9. Uday Foundation

This organisation has a unique story behind its foundation. Tulika and Rahul Verma had their second baby, Arjunuday, in 2006. He was born with multiple congenital defects and after nine surgeries, he was restored to being a normal boy his age but with the need of an artificial mechanism for his bowel movements. This led to Rahul Verma’s decision of establishing Uday Foundation, a New Delhi-based NGO, supporting children suffering from congenital disorders and other syndromes.

Uday Foundation also researches new technologies in the healthcare sector. They have projects for common people and children. Majority of patients admitted to government hospitals come from underprivileged homes of nearby states. Their families have to often sacrifice other amenities like food to save money for medical treatment. Uday Foundation serves wholesome food to such needy people for free. It has several programs for raising donations for blankets, food and so on.

Uday Foundation has received considerable media coverage for its activity during diastaer relief operations and countless people have thanked the foundation on social media for its aid.

10. Sounds of Silence

Sounds of Silence is one of the best NGO’s in Mumbai and Delhi for the hearing-impaired. It started off as a social internship program by the founder, Mr Sumit Singh Gandhi. He met a deaf and mute person at the NGO and was unable to communicate with him. This led to hour long conversations of exchanging handwritten text. As a pilot project, ten children in Punjab were taught to communicate via SMS. Its success continues to this day when the children can send 100 SMS everyday with a 25% increase in IQ.

‘BitGiving’ is an idea which utilises donated cellphones and money to fund education for the deaf children. SOS’s motto is ‘Deafness with Dignity and Equality’. Their mission is to achieve equal access for deaf people to all departments of life.

Sounds of Silence has received prestigious awards such as the World Education Summit Award and Social Entrepreneurship Award. SOS is the first NGO of its kind using technology to empower the hearing-impaired.


All of these NGO’s have and continue to scale pinnacles in their respective work. It’s overwhelming to see the change that NGO’s are bringing about in the lives of people in our country. Feeling inspired to support these great non-profits? Explore here-www.giveindia.org

Tagged , , , ,

About Samruddhi Pataskar

I am a student at IIT Kharagpur. My greatest passion is writing. I am an avid reader. Novels give me the happiness that we experience perhaps only in childhood. My favourite places are the gym and the basketball court. I am a trained Bharatanatyam dancer as well and find elocution a lot of fun.
View all posts by Samruddhi Pataskar →

43 thoughts on “10 NGOs which have revolutionised Healthcare in India

    1. Hi Rakesh 🙂

      Happy to know that you found the information useful. Do let us know if you would like to donate to any of these NGOs and need any assistance for the same.

  1. I AM DR.BIMALENDU SAHA,PRIVATE PRACTICING IN KOLKATA SINCE 1974 AS A FAMILY PHYSICIAN AND PEDIATRICIAN WISH TO PROVIDE FREE HEALTH CHECK UP TO POOR AT LEAST TWO DAYS PER WEEK NEARER TO KOLKATA . I,THEREFORE,REQUEST ANY GOOD,REKNOWNED,TRUSTED,HEALTHCARE NGOS TO CONTACT ME. DR.BIMALENDU SAHA.MOB-NO ;-8017807856.E-MAIL-sahabimalendu17@gmail.com

    1. Hello Dr.,

      Humbled to know about your contribution towards the society. You are doing a great job. Below am providing the links of two of our partner NGOs working in West Bengal. You can support them with monthly donation or through other means. Good luck! 🙂

      Sponsor the health care expenses of a patient with mental illness, https://www.giveindia.org/program/Sponsor-the-health-care-expenses-of-a-patient-with-mental-illness

      Help children affected by political violence rebuild their lives, https://www.giveindia.org/program/Help-children-affected-by-political-violence-rebuild-their-lives

  2. Hi,
    Great work. These NGOs are working for underprivileged and disabled communities. Hats off for the people who are supporting these communities and contributing to the advancement of the people who are underprivileged or disabled. Sightsavers is also one of the best NGO for blind children. It is an NGO who works not only in India but also in other countries and providing all the facilities for visually impaired. It is a non-profitable NGO which is working in India since 1966.

      1. Give India is the best NGO, who works for poor children, fighting for women & disabled rights, etc. There are many NGO in India, all are doing great work like Sightsavers who is also counted in top 10 NGO in India. Since 1966 Sightsavers India has worked across the country to protect sight and fight for disability rights. Nowadays I saw a Sightsavers’ campaign(SEE NOW) launched by Amitabh Bachchan in UP to help end avoidable blindness.

  3. I m from Assam in Lakhimpur District . We want some development of this District some best help.Many cancer patients are here. …also sugar pressure etc…many poor people are struggle in Cenecer ..sugar etc..If your NGO will work in our aries …we will help you…Thank you

    1. Hi Sandeep,

      I would suggest that you check out the work of the above mentioned NGOs in detail. I am sure you will get some ideas.

  4. This is something really commendable and deserve to be appreciated as there is really bad condition of healthcare facilities in most part of India. Thus, having such NGO’s are really crucial for our country.

    1. Hi….:)

      Happy to know that you found the information useful. Do let us know if you would like to donate to any of these NGOs and need any assistance for the same.

  5. My ngo name is meera welfare charitable trust we are working every saturday and sunday free eye and health checkup camp in extremly rural areas bihar and jharkhand .in which we r 5 doctors to performing this work by own contribution.plz any ngo want to do support and contribute fund for furher social work .plz call me 7870922612.

    1. Hi Chandan 🙂
      Thank you for sharing about the wonderful initiative that you and your colleagues have taken. Hope you can make healthcare accessible to more and more people in need. Good luck!

  6. HI
    I am a doctor and I run my own hospital in Varanasi.
    My father in law runs a charitable hospital in one of the rural areas of Ambedkarnagar.I would be highly obliged if any one of these NGOs recognise our work and help us in taking this further so that we can cover a huge population at an affordable cost.

    1. Hi Priya 🙂
      So happy to know about your father’s initiative. Can you help us with more details about the kind of collaboration/help you are looking forward to?

  7. Hey, The information was useful. But Is there any NGO that focuses only on providing nutritional food to the elderly?
    If yes, please let me know.

  8. I am a chemical engineer[ IITBombay and MIT,USA] and worked for 26 years in the chemical industry at senior functional levels in R&D and Technology. I got into a hobby of Ayurveda in 1983 and soon invented a simple one step kitchen process. Using this process, you can convert any natural product into an extract in Sesame oil. The extract displays the known properties of the natural product and does this at dose 100 to 1000 times lower than the conventional dose. I have used it successfully on a wide variety of health conditions. This obviously is an extremely affordable way to provide medicines. I have Indian patents but am very keen to work with like minded NGO’s or groups to propagate it for the benefit of society. Pl go to katonics.co.in for more information.

  9. Amazing blog !!
    People should be aware of NGOs so that whenever they need any kind of support someone should be there their contribution towards the betterment of society. It is eveyones duty to give back to society in any way possible. You did a fantastic job of writing thoroughly about them and making people aware of them. This can motivate the wellwishers of society to break out of their comfort zone and contribute.
    Chikittsa Wellness

  10. I have a very big project to help poor people and farmers, Fisher man’s etc at least more then 200 open heart surgery’s can be done for free and this can be done every year .but the problem is I don’t know whom to contact , I stay in Bangalore and this is my contact no 8050936278

    1. Hello sir namaskar.mera naam Dilbag Singh hai aur main kaithal,Haryana ka rahne vala hu.sir Maine 2016 me apni ladki ke ak kaan ka cochlier implant karvaya tha kyouki vo deaf&dumb thi.sir bahut mahnga hai cochlier implant.sir ab uske kaan pe Jo machine lagi this uski replacement par 75000 ka kharcha aayega joki mere paas nahi hai .sir Kya aap Meri help Kar sakte ho aapki bahut meharbaani hogi.aapka ahsaan jindgi bhar nahi bhulunga. Sir please aap Meri madad karna ya kisi donor ko jaante ho to please jaroor batana sir.My contact no. 9896699124 ,9588520791

      1. Hello Dilbag Singh ji,

        Humare partner NGO ‘Sense International (India)’ deafblind bacho ki madad karte hai. Niche unki contact details hai. Please ek bar unse contact kijiye.

        Phone: +91 07926301282
        Email: iarbaaz@senseintindia.org
        Address: 2nd Floor Admin Block,
        Andhajan Mandal Campus,
        Opp. Indian Institute of Management (IIM),
        Vastrapur, Ahmedabad 380015
        Gujarat

  11. all the comments i seen are belong to 2019 , hats up to us we the people change our india sooner,
    i will also open a NGO to help.

    1. Hi Mukul 🙂

      Happy to know that you found the information useful. Do let me know if you would like to donate to any of these NGOs and need any assistance for the same. Also,thank you for sharing the information about Mental Health Act in India.

    1. Hi Rahul,

      We support our partner NGOs in raising money to help people in state/city/village they work in. If you are looking for help, please provide more details, for me to suggest a relevant NGO partner who could help.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.