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CRS in India

The United Nations Development Program reports that nearly 42 percent of India's population (almost 500 million) lives on less than $1.25 per day while about 48 percent of children under age five suffer from stunting—a well-established child health indicator for chronic malnutrition. In addition, human trafficking remains a major concern throughout the country while natural and man-made disasters continue to affect India every year.


People Served: 922,979

Population: 1,251,695,584 (July 2015 est.)

Size: 1,269,219 sq mi; 1/3 size of United States

CRS' History in India

Catholic Relief Services began working in India in 1946 to help the local Church in Bombay to provide food to people affected by the war. During the next several years, child feeding programs and assistance to families in Calcutta continued, supported by Mother Teresa. By 1957, CRS was supporting 72 dioceses and 900 schools and health clinics with feeding programs.

Throughout the next several decades, CRS continued to provide U.S. government food support to its local partners to implement education, health, agriculture and emergency programs. U.S. Government food programming in India ended in 2009, but CRS has been continuing to work with partners in India to address fundamental issues of social justice, inequity in access to resources and empowerment of marginalized groups. CRS programming in India focuses on emergency resilience, relief and recovery; strengthening agriculture livelihoods; improving health systems and services; and preventing human trafficking and supporting trafficking survivors.