Press Release: Ashoka Fellow Anshu Gupta Wins Prestigious Ramon Magsaysay Award


Anshu Gupta

BANGALORE, July 29, 2015 – Ashoka Fellow ANSHU GUPTA today was announced as one of five awardees of the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay Award. Gupta was elected to the global Ashoka Fellowship in 2004 for his game-changing work in founding GOONJ. The organisation facilitates an economic bridge between urban, wealthy India and impoverished, rural India by simply sharing the surplus of wealth.

Gupta has re-defined the culture of giving in India, imbuing it with the tenets of dignity and respect for the poor. Ashoka is elated that Gupta’s efforts in creating a new paradigm of giving have been recognised by the Ramon Magsaysay Award committee for “his creative vision in transforming the culture of giving in India, his enterprising leadership in treating cloth as a sustainable development resource for the poor, and in reminding the world that true giving always respects and preserves human dignity.”

Gupta has transformed the archetype of giving away from refuse disposal to a transfer of re-usable goods, upholding standards for the quality of donations and relief materials sent. His vision is empathetic to the cultural contexts of the recipient and extends to large-scale natural disasters, bringing timely emergency supplies and support to those affected. In the recent Himalayan floods and the earthquake in Nepal, GOONJ became the most connected and reliable channel for citizens to contribute. His ongoing  Not Just a Piece of Cloth (NJPC) campaign, which transforms waste cloth into affordable sanitary napkins for women, further enhances the issues of women’s hygiene, safety and most of all, their dignity, tying into Anshu’s vision of an equal society.

The Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation has previously honoured Ashoka Fellows Arvind Kejriwal, Butet ManurungHarish HandeTri Mumpuni, Hasanain JuainiAnanda Galappatti and Mahabir Pun.

About Ashoka

Ashoka is the one of the largest networks of social entrepreneurs worldwide, with over 3,000 Ashoka Fellows in 70 countries creating large-scale impact through new innovations. Founded by Bill Drayton in 1980, Ashoka is an international network that is driving the social sector and offering a platform for people dedicated to changing the world. Ashoka pioneered the field of social entrepreneurship and has built multi-level stakeholders across the world who increasingly look to entrepreneurial talent and new ideas to solve social problems.

In India, Ashoka has a vibrant fellowship of over 370 fellows and elects a new cohort of Fellows every year. Going forward Ashoka India will also select and elect new Fellows from Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka and play a unique role in integrating the emerging social sector in South Asia. 


Slideshow photo courtesy: