Friend In Need Trust (FIN) was founded in the aftermath of the tsunami of December 2004 by Dr. Shyama V. Ramani to rehabilitate an isolated costal village called Kameshwaram in Tamil Nadu. After dealing with the immediate crisis of lack of sanitation and hygiene – the mission of FIN became to make Kameshwaram as clean as any in the world and document the process rigorously on knowledge products that could serve decision makers and agencies working on sanitation coverage elsewhere. Contracts were obtained for evidence based policy design (e.g. from DSTY, Government of India: WASTE, (NL)) and several multi-stakeholder workshops were conducted to promote awareness and design strategies for the attainment of development goals related to sanitation and waste management (e.g. for WASTE (NL); FINISH(India)). Work on Kameshwaram got published in premiere journals such as Technology forecasting and social change, Economic and Political Weekly and Journal of Development Studies.

Given the above, in January 2017, it was decided that Friend In Need Trust would henceforth have two divisons: FIN India and FIN Kameshwaram. FIN India would work on WASH issues of all marginalized zones in India, both urban and rural; while FIN Kameshwaram would continue in Kameshwaram as a rural living lab experimenting with grass roots innovation generation and diffusion and livelihoods creation.