COVID Fundraiser Raises Money, but Also School Spirit


IISJ’s first-ever COVID fundraiser was a resounding success with over ¥300,000 raised in a single week. From bake-offs and candy jar competitions to basketball shootouts and principal-for-a-day lotteries, the weeklong activities incorporated the best of both worlds: fun and fun-draising.

“As India’s COVID situation worsened over the past couple of months, I think I can speak for everyone when I say that we felt powerless against the circumstances,” said Ishitaa Nayyar, an 11th Grader at Tokyo IISJ who helped organize the fundraiser. “I believed with the effort of everyone at our school, we could improve the situation in the best way we can,” added Ishitaa. Ishitaa worked with fellow Junior Seher Nijhawan in Tokyo. Both advised Yokohama Sophomores Anisha Joshi, Ishana Tupe, and Preksha Prashanth to carry out the fundraiser there as well. 

“Initially, we thought of putting a few penny boxes around the School to collect funds, but a few days later, with help from Ms. Monika, we came up with a different plan,” said Seher. The new plan involved everyone and really contributed to School spirit for the week, she added. 

The fundraiser was called The ¥50 Challenge: students had to buy ¥50 raffle tickets to participate in events like guess the number of candy in a jar, basketball shootout, and even principal-for-a-day. The high school students were pitted against each other in separate bake sales. By the end of Friday, the organizing team had collected more than ¥300,000 – most of it in ¥100 and ¥50 coins. Some teachers were spied donating 5-figure notes as well!

“I bought ¥1,000 worth of raffle tickets for the candy jar competition and ended up guessing the number exactly,” said Saish Gulabi, a 5th grader at the Tokyo Campus. Meghna Shenoy, who got picked as Principal for a Day in Tokyo, was equally ecstatic. “Being principal of the day was awesome,” she said. “I enjoyed it and I felt so respected,” Meghna added.

The money raised – ¥310,000 in total – was donated to Sapna, an Indian nonprofit doing COVID relief work in India. To see all the action, be sure to catch the fundraiser slideshow!