Giving Back

Giving Back

Diaspora Philanthropy in Central Gujarat

Photographs and Text: Mario Rutten (ProGlo Programme Co-Director)

People have been migrating from central Gujarat to various countries around the world since the early 20th century. These migrants also have a long history of maintaining links with their home region by supporting philanthropic activities. Clock towers are of one of the earliest visible results of donations from Gujaratis in East Africa. More recent Gujarati migrants living in the UK and USA frequently mobilise donations to support philanthropic activities in their home region, especially in the field of health (hospitals), education (schools) and public facilities (roads, parks, water purifying plants).

Many migrants provide donations directly when they visit their native villages or transmit them through their resident relatives. The importance attached by the migrants to having their name on a donation plaque is especially strong among members of the Patel community.

See Working Paper 2: Diaspora Philanthropy from a Homeland Perspective: Reciprocity and Contestation over Donations in Central Gujarat, India, by Natascha Dekkers and Mario Rutten.