Daan Utsav was formerly known as The Joy of Giving Week. The Joy of Giving Week (JGW) is a "festival of philanthropy" that aims to become a part of the Indian ethos, with the Week being celebrated every year covering Gandhi Jayanti by engaging people through "acts of giving" - money, time, resources and skills - spanning the corporate, NGO and government sectors, schools, colleges and the general public. Originally called "India Giving Week", the name "Joy of Giving Week" emerged from a set of choices provided by the ad agency, Euro RSCG India, which provided PR, creative and media services for the ‘Joy of Giving Week’. This initiative was supported by many NGO's and Corporates. Corporate participate with this venture to fulfill their CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) function.
Several corporates, celebrities and organizations have undertaken efforts towards awareness, volunteering and fundraising events that they will organize during the Joy of Giving Week. A brief outline on some of the initiatives that have taken place during the Week in 2009.
Design For Change
The Design for Giving School Contest inspires children between the age group 10-13 from over 10,000 private and government schools all over India to design solutions to India's problems and implement them during the Week. Presented by Riverside School in Ahmedabad, NID, Stanford Design School and IDEO, in partnership with hundreds of educational NGOs and schools across India.
Clothes collection drive
Goonj runs a Vastradaan initiative that provides clothes and other amenities to the far-flung villages, collecting on an average 20,000 kg or about 1.2 lac units of clothing every month, processing it and distributing it through a unique clothes for work program. For the Joy of Giving Week, Goonj has undertaken a massive clothes collection drive in over 25 cities, targeting to collect at least 1 crore units of clothing during the week.
Stories of Joy
Stories of Joy brings together five short films that carry the message of Joy of Giving through interesting stories. 
A Real Joy Ride 
A "College Joyfest" to promote awareness and sensitivity among youth of 300+ college campuses in India catalyzing as fundraisers for the partner with local NGOs during the cultural festivals. The initiative was being led by JAM Magazine JAM Magazine and was being supported by MTV India.
7Days7Gifts, a simple idea where people will be encouraged to do random acts of kindness to people they don’t know for every day of the week. The 7 Day gifting challenge aims to take the focus away from you on to others. The only real condition here is that each gift should be meaningful and some thought should have gone into it.
Battle of the Buffet
"Battle of the Buffet" events by the 5 star Hotels in Chennai and Hyderabad, where they provided their most lavish spreads free of cost to NGOs of the city, who worked together as a city and sell donor passes to raise funds for their work.
Hi5 Club is an event by Bhumi and volunteers.org to engage college students and young people in volunteering for a cause of their choice for five hours during Daan Utsav. Students can volunteer either on the structured opportunities provided by Bhumi (5 hrs of teaching, cleaning a beach/park, visiting an elderly home, making educational aids, sorting out clothes or doing a collection drive, etc.), or can identify their own activity.
Celebrities Support for the Week
Celebrities from various facets supported various initiatives during the week.
- Sports - Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Geet Sethi, Prakash Padukone, Gopichand
- Cinema - Shahrukh Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Deepika Padukone, Nandita Das, Imtiaz Ali, Shriya Saran, Surya Sivakumar, Madhavan, Mini Mathur
- Corporate - Narayana Murthy, Kumar Birla, KV Kamath, Adi Godrej, Deepak Parekh, Ajay Piramal
Engaging CEOs Differently
The Indian School of Business-anchored Shadow a CEO continues to draw big names like all-time favourite Kumar Mangalam Birla, chairman, Aditya Birla Group; Ajay Piramal, chairman, Piramal Group, and others who give students a ring-side view of what a day in the life of a CEO looks like.
This year, Technopark Trivandrum will see Pay and Throw, as employees get to take aim and throw soaked sponge balls at their CEOs to vent themselves, while raising money for a cause at the same time.
Taking philanthropic ideas to scale
Launched in the Joy of Giving Week 2009 and reaching 100,000-plus students in more than 1,000 schools all over India, the Design for Change (DfC) contest now runs in over 30 countries. Students conceptualize and pilot “social change solutions” and share their learnings. DfC is now manifested as a curriculum, an ‘Amar Chitra Katha’ comic, a Pearson textbook and one of the highest rated education TED talks.
GiveIndia’s India Giving Challenge in 2009 was the country’s first online challenge. It raised over Rs.90 lakh in a month, reaching out to more donors than the organization engaged online through the rest of the year. The event raises almost Rs.5 crore per year now, and remains by far the largest philanthropy event in the country.
WishTree—a simple idea that anyone could replicate, it saw more than 2,000 trees spawn all over the country, in different shapes and sizes, raising as little as a few hundred rupees in villages to a few lakh from large companies. This one idea alone raised over Rs.2 crore across the country in the Joy of Giving Week 2013.
A bunch of new ideas are being actively used this year in Daan Utsav (2014). Two innovations that were not original Daan Utsav ideas, but are being actively encouraged are:
n Spotfix inspired by The Ugly Indians—an anonymous citizen-led initiative that comes together using the slogan “Kaam Chalu, Mooh Bandh” to clean up spots. All it takes is a group of 10-12 responsible citizens who care enough.
Stakeholder engagement activities
Celebrity experiences on auction
n Actor Amitabh Bachchan went down memory lane, sharing experiences from his career in the industry, his father’s poetry and anecdotes that can’t be shared in the public domain.
n Actor Salman Khan auctioned a two-hour gym session.
The poor give back too
Daan Utsav has demonstrated that giving is, in the end, all about how big your heart is and not about how deep your pocket is. Several thousands of the less fortunate—auto-rickshaw drivers, guards, maids and others give back through the festival of giving as well.
n A self-help group of 8,000 women, on hearing about Daan Utsav, decided not to be beneficiaries, but givers instead. These women, engaged as maids, sweepers and daily wagers, donated 15,000kg of sugar, pulses and oil in October 2010, when food inflation was at its peak in the country.