International Justice and Action: Holdeen India Program

UU Holdeen India Program

Students in India smile for the camera.

About the Holdeen India Program

The Holdeen India Program is an expression of Unitarian Universalism’s global commitment to compassion, equity, and peace.

Unitarian Universalism has had ties with India of faithful solidarity and friendship stretching back to the nineteenth century. In the 1820s the Unitarian representative in India built a lasting relationship with the great social reformer Ram Mohan Roy and the institution he established, the Brahmo Samaj. Later in the nineteenth century, dozens of Unitarian and Universalist churches hosted Swami Vivekananda during his landmark voyages to the United States. In 1920, the American Unitarian Association invited and hosted Swami Paramahansa Yoganada for his famed journey to the West.

To honor these longstanding ties with India, the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) created the Unitarian Universalist Holdeen India Program (UUHIP) in 1984. The program was established through a gift from Jonathan Holdeen, a lawyer and businessman with a concern for India’s economic development.

The Holdeen India Program provides aid for humanitarian initiatives and social enterprises that advance the prosperity of all of India’s people. Hundreds of education, livelihood development, and humanitarian relief projects have received UUHIP support. To learn more about UUHIP or to find out how you can become involved, please email us at

Express Your Solidarity

There are several ways individuals and congregations can express their solidarity with the Holdeen India Program's work:

  • Host a Holdeen India Program Sunday at your congregation - invite someone from the program to come as a guest speaker
  • Incorporate stories from HIP partners into your worship and Religious Education programs; discussion guides are available for congregations
  • Screen the Holdeen India Program film
  • Volunteer your skills with the Holdeen India Program
  • Contribute financially to the critical work of our partners: make a donation in support