Tara Suri

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/03/23/art.suri.jpg caption=”Tara Suri, 16, hopes to help to young children around the world achieve their full potential.”] Bake sales and recycling are common fundraising tactics in middle school. But Tara Suri wasn’t baking cupcakes for just any common cause. Her cause was hope, literally.

When Tara was 13, she was more than saddened by her trip to India with her family. From her sadness sprung the idea of trying to help the orphans in India and Sudan whom she saw abandoned by their parents, sometimes found in garbage dumps. Tara started H.O.P.E., or Helping Orphans Pursue Education. It aims to give kids the opportunity to achieve their full potential with the basics, like a sturdy roof over their heads, that Tara and her friends sometimes took for granted back in Scarsdale, New York.

Now, at 16, she has expanded her cause with an umbrella organization called Aandolan, which means “a movement for change” in Hindi. Through that fundraising group, Tara now runs Turn Your World Around and Connect a Kid along with H.O.P.E., and a lot of it for kids growing up continents away who are in sad situations.

Update: Watch the CNN.com Live interview

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79 Responses to Tara Suri

  1. Adriana says:

    I think that Tara Suri is doing an amazing thing by helping those that are less fortunate. It is also interesting to see that she started H.O.P.E. at such a young age.

  2. Parminder Singh says:

    Someone, so young, doing so much to make life better for those forgotten orphans, is simply extraordinary. How one wishes that instead of fighting each other, the nations could fight misery and poverty instead. Tara Suri is certainly a shining example of what an individual can do. Just imagine what a fine world it will be if the nations could do the same.

  3. Bonnie Koff says:

    I am honored to know this young woman personally. Apathy is a common “malady” among many of our youth today. Tara exemplifies, a moral consciousness of someone far beyond her years.

  4. Missy says:

    I wish there were more media coverage on extraordinary young adults such as Tara instead of the Hiltons and Kardashians of the world.

  5. Naomi says:

    Tara is indeed an extraordinary person. She showed this potential from a very early age and she has a wonderful family who support and love her so that she has the capacity to give to and love others.
    I had the privilege of meeting her and she is a remarkable young woman. I hope she continues to work hard and enjoys all she achieves

  6. S Reddy says:

    Tara is doing an amazing job by starting HOPE and touching the lifes of young orphans around the world. Thanks for her imagination and effort.

  7. Melinda says:

    What specifically triggered you to start such an amazing organization?

  8. Adam says:

    hats off …. Tara Suri ..

    Keep up the good work.

    Never give-up to fight Poverty and Misery.

  9. julia b says:

    How unselfish and refreshing to know that there are still many young people out there that care about others, and not so much about the me and the I , drinking, partying and up to no good.. syndrome in this day and age

  10. Niharika says:

    You are an amazing girl. You care more about the important things in world that need our help. You have inspired me very much, I want to be like you when I grow up.

  11. Nagesh Tavarageri says:

    Simply astounding effort. The true nature of human is absolutely alive in, in the form of taking care of the other living beings. Keep it up and show the way for others to follow. Kudos to you!!!

  12. Oralia says:

    I have always had the dream of doing something so grand, but it seems so out of reach. How did you start it and gather funds?

  13. Venkat says:

    It is great to read such stories. It is truly inspiring when you see a young person doing such good work. Her parents must be proud of her. All the best for her endeavours. God bless her.

  14. MIke says:

    Love your site Nicole….
    HOw do we submit people for you to interview?

    WHat about a magician who is using his skill in his community to keep kids focus in schools?
    Please visit Curtis Lovell http://www.MagicofCurtis.com

  15. AT says:

    Keep up the good work Tara. We all are honored. I have seen people starting charity organization for Tax saving purposes and just for their name (they call it brand).

    You are a true hero. You will soon find support from all quarters. People like you will make a difference in this society.

  16. Sethu says:

    Tara is doing a wonderful job. Such a young age and what a motivated girl she is. My well wishes to her and her parents who should be feeling so proud.

    Tara and her HOPE should be given more publicity.

  17. Robert halsey says:

    Whilst Tara deserves all the credit for her magnanimous and dedication it is only because she comes from the sort of family that has the values she imbibed.Their love and support and encouragement have helped her into such selfless acts. Let us remember that she belongs to a community where the extended family is important. Obviously they see the poor of the world as extensions that need love and attention.

    If we really believe in her work there will be others who will join her in her hour of need which is also the hour of need of those who suffer.

  18. Lisa says:

    How can I help your foundation and cause?

  19. Bo Diddly says:

    Great Job!!!!!!!!

  20. Lois Sierra says:

    With all the bad happening in the world today its nice to see a young person make a positive impact with others. Keep up the good work Tara.

  21. Mike says:

    It’s amazing that everytime someone wants to help underprivledged kids, they run to another continent. What about all the underprivledged kids here in the US. I think it’s amazing what she is doing but as the saying goes, clean up your own back yard before doing your neighbors.

  22. Goutham says:

    Hello Tara,


    You are doing a great job. We all learn how to make life more meaningfull and try do something which will help needy to lead a good life.Thank you, Keep it up the good work.

  23. BrazilianDude says:

    It’s so refreshing to read this type of news coverage, instead of having the regular media bombarding us with “news” about stupid Hiltons and Angelinas and other phonies … Good idea Nicole !! Suggestion to Tara Suri : Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation might have some funds available for your project.
    Can we have a follow up on this story ??

  24. Jackie says:

    A lot of people on here are acting surprised that young people actually do amazing works. It should not be a surprise because study after study shows that young people volunteer more than older people. The Paris Hiltons and Nicole Richies of our world are not the standard.

  25. Sandhya says:

    She is amazing.. I appreciate her for such a great idea and the way she started t o do it.. I also appreciate her parents who are behind her.

  26. Nicki says:

    Please tell us how you did this. It may inspire more us to do the same or to help out.

  27. Gloria Voysest says:

    Tara! Brava! Gee you are doing so much! Keep the good work.
    I wish I had been like you at 16! God Bless you!

  28. David Vail says:

    Mazel Tov:

    Hats off, flung high and wide. May the goodness under her hat land elsewhere and leave seeds of her humanity and care to spawn elsewhere. When is running for the presidency?

  29. Sumit says:

    This is one of the greatest thing anyone can do for this world.
    Kudos to u. I wish we can do something like this to change this world a better place for all.

  30. mm, wi says:

    What an incredible mission. And by her example, Tara reminds each of us that it’s never too early (or too late!) to commit to changing the world. An inspiration for those who sit on the fence about committing to social causes!! Keep it up!

  31. Regina says:

    The work and motivation of this young lady is most admirable!. The media should focus more attention on these young people fighting for a great cause than in some spoiled rock and movie stars who do little for humanity’s sake!. Way to go!.

  32. Sabraham says:

    I appreciate your passion, which motivates you to do this great job in your younger age. Great postive role model specially for youngsters. If anyone meets the reality of the present world and meaning in life, surely there will be transformation in that person, which will help him or her to make right choices in life. May God continue to guide you and bless you.

  33. Buddhamon says:

    Tara, you are living the purpose that your name has given you.
    You are truly blessed as you live to bless others.

    For readers: Tara is the name given to the Buddhist goddess of enlightened activity and fearlessness.

    I urge you all to not only praise this young woman, but to take action yourselves. She is extraordinary, but the world needs all of us to play a role in living and giving loving kindness.

  34. Lovey says:

    Tara you are doing such a wonder job, keep up the good work
    hope others will follow your example

  35. josie salazar says:

    i think what tara is doing is great. i am also 16 years old and i would really want to help with what shes doing. not a lot of teens would want to help other people. hopefully one day i can travel the world and help children across the world.

  36. Sara says:

    Yeah, that’s great, but I wonder: after she gets her Ivy League degree thanks to starting a charitable foundation, how much will she care about the orphans? College is becoming harder and harder to get into, and kids are, sadly, doing more and more things like this to set themselves apart from the competition – not because they actually care. I hope that’s not the case here, but I know several people who only did charity work and over-seas goodwill missions so they could put it on college applications.

  37. Heidi says:

    How do I help? I admire her for being so young and yet doing something so amazing.

  38. Chakrapani Nettem says:

    Its really a good change among your friends. People like you should join together and grow your organization day by day. Please let us know how we can help you in building your organization.

  39. Lauren says:

    It is so crazy because today I left my World Cultures class where we are watching a video about Dinka “Lost Boys” getting granted U.N. refugee status and coming to america for better oppurtunities, and the video shows their struggles and their personal growth and it was beautiful. I left class thinking about how much I wanted to help the Dinka in Sudan and how amazing it would be to be as selfless as possible, and then I am looking at cnn.com during my break and see this story and it seemed perfect. This girl is now my hero, and a huge inspiration because I now know what I can do do help children around the world and people who have such a strong will to live, it puts me to shame to even be in my nice cozy apartment taking a break from getting an education that is readily available to me. I take for granted everything around me, and today I have just really been thinking about that..more than usual..but Suri took the intiative and made a difference instead of just thinking about it. It’s a beautiful thing that such wonderful people exsist in our world and we are lucky to have them.

  40. Debbie says:

    If only more people could be like her. The world would be a better place if everyone could just reach out a little bit. We don’t have to travel half-way around the world to be of service to society. We can do little things, such as making donations, spreading awareness of global issues, recycling, and everything in between. If a 16-year-old can make a difference, so can you.

  41. María says:

    God bless Tara and her good heart. She is a role model for our children because she is sharing her talents. She has connected desire, decision and action in a word that means “Help”. “Need” is always looking for “Help”; however, some people put chains to “Help” while “Need” grows more and more. We have to provide our “Help” as soon as possible in order to stop “Need’s” growing. Tara is doing it.

  42. Cat says:

    its refreshing to come across a teenager that isnt a selfish brat. Im inspired in her efforts to make those childrens world a better place. Finally, a teenager that has been raised right

  43. Wynnoma Long says:

    Hey girl w/U? I’am so glad to see some my age doing something so great and wounderfully pure, that i want to do something that amazing,but not excatully like u, but really close, that i can do in my neiborhood! well keep upthe good work!!!!!:}

  44. Christy says:

    mike, do you honestly believe that our country doesn’t take care of it’s own? do you see America’s children living in sewers, eating out of our trash piles, or orphanages without electricity and clean water?

    Tara you are amazing! Flat and simple.

  45. Serena Lohitai says:

    I’m from Sudan and I am really happy to see people like Tara helping my country. We live in a world where no one pays attention to countries like Sudan, where our women are still treated like properties, but to have such a young girl help out gives me hope that one day my country will be a save place for me and other Sudanese to live in.
    Thank you Tara

  46. David Conteh says:

    This is an example of wonderful human being. God bless you and continue the good job.

  47. Renay says:

    I am truly inspired by the caring and pure loving spirit of this young person. Her parents, and all who love her, should be proud of her gift to the sometimes uncaring people who share our world. Keep up the good work!

  48. Preetham says:

    How did you start out in the beginning? How did you increase awareness about Andolan in more people or – increase your exposure, you yourself being so young?

    Keep up the good work! All the best!

  49. Ben says:

    Such selflessnes and empathy! The world needs more of this rather than the selfabsorbed youth we seem to be breeding. And to Mike: The opportunities in America are almost limitless, but there are way fewer opportunites in these countries that Tara is putting in her efforts.

  50. Jon C says:

    Tara’s incredible, and I can’t wait to see more about TurnYourWorldAround — speaking of, I don’t see it listed at cnn.com/live ?

  51. Julia says:

    Tara, you are an inspiration to everyone, young and old! So refreshing to see a young person involved in unselfish work as this. Paris Hilton, take heed, you may learn something from this.

  52. Munawar Ahmedi says:

    I am truly inspired by the goodness of your heart and your compassion at such a young age. You are a role model for all
    the teenagers in this country. You make your parents proud.
    Keep up the good job.

  53. Aditi Patil says:

    This is motivational and insparational. I an going to India this yaer and I hope to do somthing similar and make a diffrence.

  54. Gina says:

    Keep up the good work! We need more people like you. God bless!!

  55. Donna Rice says:

    God bless you, I wish there was more media coverage on this need for children and the children who help like you. Thank you!!!

  56. Sarah says:


  57. Chris Appleton says:

    Its nice to see this kind of work. She is a great humanitarian!!
    It is like watching the Nyee Moses Utube video and seeing how much she has helped others……..Incredible.

    Keep up the great work!!

  58. Raju Kavalla says:

    Tara – your story and actions are so inspiring. I hope that you will be able to motivate the new wealthy guys in India particulary the young IT folks who are making tons of money but just spend their time and energy on wordly pleasure. If your work gets equal media coverage in India I am sure there will serveral young ones who will follow your path.

    Keep up the good work

  59. Nathan Maulorico says:

    I wish there were more people like this in the world! If we all grew up like this the world would be a better place to live!!!
    Nathan Maulorico

  60. Dioni says:

    We have money to raise wars, and fight for years!! We have money to send people to the moon.yet our governments will not do anything to help the people who are truly in need how sad !!

  61. Sammy says:

    And THIS… is what it’s all about.

    Let this young lady be an inspiration to all of us…

  62. Sammy says:

    Start small.

    Start in your own community. There’s a million opportunities to help. Paint an older person’s house.. mow their lawn, volunteer at the Animal Shelter. Mentor kids. Give an overworked mom a day off by watching her kids.

    The possibilities are endless…

    It starts with a pebble thrown into the pond.. watch the ripples spread.

  63. Rachel New York, NY says:

    Brilliant Tara! An inspiration to others across the globe!

  64. mike says:

    Christy, yes I honestly do believe we don’t take care of our own. You read and see it all the time but people decide to turn a blind eye to it. Why, because it’s not their problem. Why help the ones here when you can become famous by helping ones overseas. I’m in Iraq right now and you see it here all the time but does anybody care? NO, all they see is war and violence cause thats what the papers show you. So don’t even think it doesn’t happen in the US.

  65. kodali says:




  67. Gulliford says:

    This is neither politics nor election. I have no qualification to be a pastor, scholar, philosopher, or leader. I have no interest to improve any political or religious systems because this is not my job. I do not want to increase any bad influence on someone. If we have the problems of Bible’s versions, kindly ask the pastor or the Pope, please. I have no exact answer, can we find out together?
    Why do we need dilemma?
    Do we need a dilemma?
    Do we believe constellations?
    Do we really believe 4 or 22 represents anything?
    Do we need a media(b-) and a political bureau which are creating a dilemma on the wicked person without a job and hated by some merchants and someone else?
    Do we need any junk mails or numerous virus which are called W32.Gammima.AG, Infostealer. Lineage, Bloodhound. Packed.Jmp, Infostealer. Gampass, Trojan. Dropper, Hacktool. Rootkit, Inforstealer.Perfwo, Hacktool Rootkit, Packed.Generic.61, Trojan Horse from December 2007 to April 22, 2008? Can we find out who ever sent any junk mails or numerous virus to attack your computer or steal your data?
    Do we need to use junk mail or numerous virus to create a dilemma, news, or political purpose?
    Do you really believe a person can have the magic and miracle?
    Do we really believe a person who likes or dislikes to talk is God?
    Is the global warming a disaster or a chance from a chosen person or notchosen person marked by someone?
    Is democratism, communism, or the divine right of kings good?
    Is humanity or technology good or bad?
    Is control or freedom good or bad?
    Is good or bad really a question?
    God bless you!

  68. Deepak says:

    Great job, Tara. It’s really inspiring and keep rocking… I am sure, you’re an amazing kid… I wish you all the best!!

  69. Gulliford says:

    why do someone always use the view of American culture?

  70. Gulliford says:

    I am not an “1.angel,” “2.junior doctor,” “3.prince,” “4.knight,” “5.rapist,” “6.dangerous boy,””7.terroist,”or “8.any historian people” marked by someone but “a really common person” and “very tired” to talk and fight anymore because I have some other business indoor and outdoor, we can read the whole bible together at different places, and don’t judge or criticize each other anymore by churchs, tv, media, news, or blogs. God bless you\^-^/

  71. Gulliford says:

    Well done, Tara! I haven’t been to Africa, and there are many hungry children. I do not think the globle warming is just from a person(that’s an easy answer), but we still have many problems to solve. You can be our courage to save the hungry children suffered from the rise of price of food, oil. Take care, and God bless you.\^0^/

  72. Mandi says:

    Great…but I too really wonder why not help kids in our own country? These rich kids get trips to some foreign country and decide to make a difference but somehow are blind to the needs of kids in their own country. We have kids who are homeless, lack an education, and kids who go hundgry every night….kids not getting medical care and kids being abused and neglected. But even in the adult world you see more people starting up charities to help kids in these other countries while our own kids are ignored. I wonder why it takes having the ability to go to a foreign country and seeing these things to inspire to help those kids, but we can’t inspire people to look and see what is lacking in our own country!

  73. C. Andersen says:

    Girl you are one in a million. There is not many people out there that would take the steps you did to go the extra mile. I just want to say what you are doing is amazing in every way. The most impressive thing is that you begun this at age 13. I am 67 and would not have any idea how to go about starting something like this after all my years of knowledge. The world needs more people like you and people to help out in what you are trying to achive. Don’t give up when things get tough and you will make a huge difference in the world. I will continue to be looking at more things that you are doing and will continue to support you and your H.O.P.E foundation!

  74. claude says:


    It is very nice some such talent to care about other this just like gift.
    But I sure anyone can do it if they realy want do it.
    In France we realy don’t have this can spirit.
    That make the all soviety so sad in the moment…

  75. Josephine says:

    You are truly an inspiration, Tara! You’re doing wonderful things in the world, and I can’t wait to see what you’ll be doing next!

  76. Brittany Engelke says:

    Hey Tara I respect what you have done for all those kids and I think they should get a better life than what they have now. People shouldn’t just look at kids like that and not do anything about it. What if it was their kid they wouldn’t like it. So to see someone else’s kid like that is so wrong. Thats why I support what you are doing and someday I’ll do the same as you. You inspired me and I thank you.
    Your Friend,

  77. BINA PANDYA says:


    You make me proud. I find your story inspirational. Keep up the great work!

  78. kim says:

    Mike: If you see a need for children here in the US, you should get off your couch and fill it! Don’t knock Tara for doing a good thing where she saw a need.

    Tara — your vision is beyond your years and is truly inspirational.

  79. Ashokmend says:

    Tara its great effort. Keep it up. Not sure who encouraged you when u get this idea, but my kudos to your parents for supporting you and raising you with great values and extraordinary spirit.

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