About Us

Introduction

Indian American Education Foundation (IAEF) was created in May 2000, out of our belief that education, along with economic power, is the most viable means to promote a world of peace, prosperity, and harmony.

IAEF supports educational programs both in India and in the US. It is run jointly by Directors who provide guidance and advice, Trustees who provide financial support to our projects and activities, and Associates who volunteer their time and talent to run our programs and activities.

The Foundation has no paid employee and does not compensate any Trustee, Director, or Volunteer for services rendered. Its overhead expenses are minimal.

While many organizations are supporting education of children from underprivileged families in India, a large section of the disadvantaged remains neglected: children with disabilities. Although the government of India provides free basic education to all children, an estimated 90 percent of India’s children aged 4 – 16 years with physical and mental disabilities (approximately 35 million; there are an additional 5 million mentally challenged children) are out of school. Many become parasites or beggars – not by choice but because callous school managements and over-anxious parents of able-bodied children discourage them from entering the nation’s state-run schools.

Most charitable institutions for the disabled often lack educational resources and teachers trained to address their special needs. Poverty – children with disabilities generally come from destitute families – keeps most parents unable to access these institutions. To help alleviate the staggering national burden resulting from depriving millions of disabled children of their basic right of education, IAEF partners with non-profit organizations in India and abroad to meet these challenges.

How it Works

IAEF is operated by a team of volunteers in the USA and in India and is sustained by individual donors. Donors have the option to allocate their donations to their favorite cause. IAEF forwards 100% of each donation to the designated organizations/institution. IAEF monitors all projects and decides to provide continuous support based on the performance by the recipient.

Donors are provided receipts and the donations are tax-exempt to the extent allowed by the Internal Revenue Service.

IAEF supports only not-for-profit and charitable organizations/institutions. Indian organizations must provide a Certificate of Registration of Societies as well as proof of registration under Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) along with the proposal for funding.

Our Vision

To help empower children with disabilities to become self-sufficient and productive through education and skills. To address the critical shortage of trained teachers of special education, the Foundation plans to expand its Teacher Training program by establishing regional centers in India – New Delhi, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Mumbai, and Chennai – to provide the level and quality of training to teachers of special education that are available at premier institutions in the West. At the same time, we envision an enlightened Indian American community taking the responsibility for fostering positive understanding and appreciation of our culture and heritage in mainstream America.

Our Founder

Dr. Prem Kumar

Prem Kumar received his early education in India and came to the US in 1970 to pursue higher education. He received a master’s degree in English (University of Idaho) and earned a doctorate in English (Washington State University). Subsequently, he taught at several universities in the US before accepting a position, in 1986, in the training division of The Boeing Company where he is now a senior Employee Development Specialist.

Dr. Kumar has headed and co-founded several cultural and community organizations in the US including the Indian American Political Advocacy Council, Nargis Dutt Cancer Foundation of Washington State, Society for Technical Communication Puget Sound Chapter, and Washington State Network for Human Rights. In 2000, he founded the Indian American Education Foundation (IAEF), a not-for-profit organization, dedicated to elevating the quality of life for children with disabilities in India.

Dr. Kumar has published extensively on literature, arts, education, and social issues. His third collection of poems in Punjabi “Ardh Shatabdi” (Half-a-Century) was published in 2006 by Chetna Parkashan (India). A self-made man who grew up in an economically disadvantaged family, he retains a personal commitment to alleviating the condition of disadvantaged and disabled children through education.

Change their world, change yours, this changes everything.