“My decision to start an NGO while still being a student stemmed completely from my love for the city. Having grown up in Kerala, I moved here for my graduation and it’s been an overwhelming 10 years now, with Chennai’s beautiful culture and people impacting me every single day.
There were many incidents, of course, that maneuvered me in pursuit of social service but the most significant one has to be the co-curricular requirements of my college, demanding students to dedicate a certain number of hours towards the community. Here’s where I got the opportunity to work with people in our slums, in turn, gaining a deep insight into the economic gaps that hindered their progress.
Now that alongside my time with other NGOs, catering to patients suffering from cancer, opened my eyes to a completely new world, where even a small act of kindness could go as far as saving a life. It made me realize the support required in this domain especially after witnessing treatment centers like The Adayar Cancer Institute never denying access to any patient who walks in, for a second chance at life! And mind you, this is done at all times regardless of the crowd that flock in – even when there’s a complete dearth of resources.
So with these two experiences impacting me a great deal, I started directing all my energies towards uplifting children in orphanages on the outskirts of Chennai. And gradually I was able to build a group of like-minded volunteers, who took up several responsibilities, right from creating a residential space for children, previously staying in their schools to providing new uniforms and books year on year.
Alas, what began there was a beautiful journey where my organization has grown to aid all types of causes including COVID relief. Now particularly, with reference to this new havoc that’s been shaking our cores, I took a stand to support the abandoned by providing them food during the 2020 lockdowns. It was, of course, incredibly challenging to organize but I somehow pulled through with the help of my household- cooking and distributing meals for hundreds of people across various areas for the first forty days.
In the end, my goal is to be there for various groups, guiding them towards times, through whatever means possible. There’s still a long road ahead to achieving a utopian society, but I’ll strive through with satisfaction to steer positive change in my own little way!”