Amma is a visionary humanitarian and spiritual leader who has personally embraced more than 35 million people across six continents.

Each of Embracing the World's projects has been launched to help the world's poor who have come to unburden their hearts and cry on Amma’s shoulder.

That's where we come in, and you can, too. Receiving Amma's embrace, many feel inspired and want to give something back.

Learn more about our work in the areas of food, shelter, healthcare, education, livelihood, emergencies, environment and research.

Our Founder & Inspiration: Mata Amritanandamayi (Amma)

Spiritual leader, humanitarian and visionary Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi (known to millions simply as ‘Amma’),
is a servant of the world community. Through her inspiring life of love, inner strength and self-sacrifice,
Mata Amritanandamayi has inspired people all over the planet to strive to make more and more space in the hearts
for others and to dedicate free time to social service.

At the invitation of admirers from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Australia, Europe and elsewhere,
Amma travels throughout the world, guiding people to emotional fulfillment as well as offering insights and solutions to
global issues such as environmental pollution, mistreatment of women, and religious disharmony.

At the center of Amma’s life is her darshan: the tender, caring embrace that has been sought out by millions.
It is in this intimate manner—a heartfelt hug—that Mata Amritanandamayi meets one and all, listens to their problems
and gives them the inspiration and knowledge to uplift themselves and, ultimately, others.

What we've Achieved
in disaster relief since 2004
for children in poverty
100,000 WOMEN
helped to start their own businesses
45,000 HOUSES
in 75 locations throughout India
treated free of charge since 1998
for the homeless and hungry throughout India
planted worldwide since 2001
children from our orphanage earn a college degree
widows and people with disabilities
Amma has done more work than many governments have ever done for their people... Her contribution is enormous. - Prof. Muhammad Yunus, 2006 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Founder, Grameen Bank

Prof. Muhammad Yunus

2006 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate

Founder, Grameen Bank

Our Approach

A unique feature of Embracing the World's administrative structure is that all top-level administrators at both the national and international levels are volunteers. There are also a huge number of volunteers active at every level of the organization - the vast majority of all our efforts are carried out by volunteers. This combined with an ethic of personal renunciation demonstrated by Amma and filtered down to every level of the organization ensures that the funds raised directly reach the beneficiaries of our projects, instead of being dissipated in administrative overhead.


Studies show that when governments and some organizations allocate money for relief projects, much of it is dissipated in wages. Amma points out:

“It's like pouring oil from one glass to another down a line — in the end, you don't have any oil left; it is all stuck to the inside of the glasses. This way, 1,000 dollars become 100 dollars by the time it reaches the people. Whereas if we get 10 dollars, we add our effort to it and the money multiplies.” – Mata Amritanandamayi

Amma is not blaming the government; of course, government employees need to make a living. But our army of volunteers allows us to do more with less.


We don't use contractors. All the materials-like bricks, windows, doors, tables, chairs, beds—are made in-house. The electrical, plumbing and structure is all done by volunteers. But Amma places the credit for her success squarely on the shoulders of her admirers around the world.

“It is my children who have made all this possible. My children are my wealth; they are my strength.” – Mata Amritanandamayi

October 30, 2015

Despite the rain, volunteers near Milan in Northern Italy planted 600 trees as part of our InDeed Campaign earlier this year.

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October 23, 2015

In late 2014, our construction volunteers built fifteen replacement homes, or “Amma Houses” in Batwadi for fifteen families displaced by flooding and landslides. In early 2015, our volunteers built a community center to provide an indoor facility for village functions.

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October 22, 2015

Fashion 4 Development, a philanthropic organization aiming to use fashion to connect disparate sectors across the globe to solve complicated problems, recently presented Amma with the “Medal of Honor” at their Annual First Lady’s Luncheon. The award recognized Amma’s decades of service and her emphasis on providing impoverished people with basic necessities.

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October 16, 2015

In January 2013, our volunteers launched Amma’s Pantry Project, in collaboration with the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano in the San Francisco Bay Area in California. Well over 100 individuals and households in the Bay Area now participate in Amma’s Pantry.

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October 16, 2015

Amma’s 62nd birthday was celebrated on September 27th. As per the Embracing the World tradition, her birthday was used to introduce our new projects and to expand our current humanitarian initiatives, in total touching the lives of more than 400,000 people in poverty.

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October 14, 2015

For the past three years, Embracing the World volunteer Amparo Saavedra has led a team that teaches Amma’s IAM Meditation classes and organic gardening for prisoners, and helps the prisoners raise funds for children with cancer.

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