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97 Reviews
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April 20, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

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April 20, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

Folks
We have an ex-volunteer who writes reviews about the organization and its transparency. Kindly email me and I will provide you with all supporting documentation you may need to show you that we have a clean financial record. I have also personally spoke to CNN and they cleared Akshaya of
any mishandling of money even before the award ceremony in 2010. We have refunded this donors money in good faith. No charity is required to refund a donors money. We have proof of the refunds and an apology letter to the donor when a check bounced due to clerical error. Mistakes do happen but the greater good is learning to forgive and move on. The mistake we as an organization did was to not get a letter from her that she would move on after she got her refund. It is sad that in this day while not wanting to do anything constructive we have people focusing their energies in doing wrong.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I a a board member and have visited Madurai and seen the work first hand

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None

April 12, 2011
14 people found this review helpful

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April 12, 2011
14 people found this review helpful

I began volunteering for Akshaya after reading the CNN report. Initially I was also very impressed with the touching videos and pictures. But I was in for a nasty surprise. In a few months, I realized that the organization was not really as transparent as it claimed. There were several inconsistencies in what was said and done in the organization. I saw a lot of lies and misrepresentations.

Narayanan Krishnan had been using his personal ICICI account (account #601601504494) to collect the donations. The account details were on his website until Nov 2010. Not all the money sent to that account is not shown in the books. A donation of $10,000 I had sent to that account was written off as "cash purchases". A registered non-profit with IT exemption must not be using a personal account for donation collection. After I pointed this out to this to Narayanan Krishnan, he removed the account details from his website in Nov 2010 right before the CNN program. However he has collected a substantial amount of money as donation on this personal account and he does NOT issue receipts for the all money received on his personal account. I was refused a receipt for the donation. Fortunately I have an email correspondence from their senior volunteer Mr R.Parthasarathy to prove my claim.

Earlier the Akshaya trust website would mention that there were zero administrative expenses. But the truth was that they have
always had salaried employees. The information was put on their website merely to mislead donors. They removed the misleading statement after I questioned them on that. Here is another interesting discrepancy. The CNN report published last year mentions the cost of his daily operations is $327.
Source:
http://www.cnn.com/2010/LIVING/04/01/cnnheroes.krishnan.hunger/

But when you check out his website today (4/12/2011) he reports his daily operation expenses to be $450 per day.
Source: http://www.akshayatrust.or/donation_foreign_currencies.php
I know the cost of food prices has risen but an increase of
$123 PER DAY in just a year sounds far too fishy !!!

I discovered several other discrepancies in this organization and lost my complete faith in this "CNN hero". I had contributed $62,000 to the Akshaya home shelter. My donations were supposed to be used to sponsor the 5th block of the shelter. I did not receive even a single third party vendor receipt to show me how the money was spent. I received occasional pictures on the progress of the construction. There was absolutely no visibility. I got a rude response when I asked N.Krishnan to be more accountable. His behavior and attitude was most unprofessional and unethical.

I got in touch with several donor families in Madurai and realized that several families had been fleeced. With great difficulty I managed to get my donation money refunded. I wrote to CNN just before the CNN hero's program. They threatened to sue me for defamation and I threatened to sue their US office for financial misappropriation and they refunded my money slowly. They promised to refund all the money before the CNN program. But right after the CNN hero's program was over one of the checks they had sent to me for $45,000 bounced. I can prove all that I have written with my bank audit trail and email correspondences with Akshaya.

It was one of the most painful experiences in my life. A lesson well learned indeed !!! In addition to donating a large amount of money I spent a lot of time volunteering for them only to discover the truth was far different from the reality. Please do your homework before you fall for the media reports and touching story. There is much more to this organization than the rosy media reports.

If you dig a little more deeper you will find out that Narayanan Krishnan and his family live in an opulent home in Madurai and own several properties in India. In India where corruption and tax evasion is rampant property can be acquired far below the market value under the aegis of a charitable trust. I came to know that many more families in Madurai have been misled by this organization. Please, please do your homework before you fall for the rosy reports. I learned it the hard way. Krishnan must have started the organization with a good intention. But all the fame and fortune at such a young age corrupted him. Please contact families in Madurai and get to know the organization and its founder better before you donate to this organization.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Yes.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Make them financially more accountable and transparent.

April 5, 2011

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April 5, 2011

Very moving video of the founder helping "untouchables" by feeding, shaving, bathing, hugging. Very obviously sincere love for fellow human beings. Bless Akshaya.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

n/a

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

n/a

April 5, 2011

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April 5, 2011

stories all over the internet, speak volumes of the founder.I wish Akshya all the very nest

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

yes

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

none

April 4, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
April 4, 2011

I saw this video and felt so happy knowing there are people in this world that still have a heart and care for the rest of us. I wish the best for Akshaya and all of their volunteers for the priceless work they do.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

knowing that my contribution has helped feed human beings in need of nutrition both physically and emotionally.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

do nothing. this organization is already doing enough of a good job!

March 14, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
March 14, 2011

I came to know about Akshaya through a CNN video where Narayanan Krishnan was brought on as part of some show that honored him for his selfless efforts. It was heartening to see the conviction and guts he has shown to leave the comforts of his own lifestyle behind to venture and do something for the welfare of those that have absolutely nothing, not even food to eat. I continue to support Akshaya in whatever way I can and have also spread the word about it.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Eradication of hunger

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

become a full time volunteer myself!

March 9, 2011

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March 9, 2011

I was shocked when I saw the video which inspired this organization.

I think it is a awesome job they are doing and me donating is the least thing I can do. I support this organization.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have not personally experienced results.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

none

March 6, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
March 6, 2011

Inspiring and worthy of sharing...I wanted to send the story of this wonderful organization to others! Thank you!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Watching and listening.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Donate more!

March 6, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
March 6, 2011

Akshaya is a great organization to help spread humanity in the world. I like their mission of feeding the poor who cant feed themselves.It has been a pleasant experience donating to them.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

NA

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

NA

March 2, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
March 2, 2011

I first heard about Akshaya USA from a video of the founder, and the charities work on Facebook. I googled the founder to find out more about the charity so I could donate. I was incredible impressed when I received a reply with a thank you for my donation and a proof of payment with tax-deductible information. I gave a small donation, around $50 however, I felt I was being treated as if I was a large donor, respecting my time and donation to an incredible worthy cause.
I am so impressed with the work of this charity that I thought about offering my services as a volunteer in any position, when I finish college in the future. The work of Akshaya keeps hundreds, if not thousands of people from dying from malnutrition and starvation each week. A future donation, scholarship or award, can literally keep hundreds of people from literally dying. I would only suggest one thing, that the charity sends emails reminders, and even "begging letters" to remind us all of their list that more needs to be done and donations are always happily accepted!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have seen how people are spreading the word on Facebook, and see how amazed people are with their comments on how one man can help change the world.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would encourage them to ask for money more.

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