My friend Rajkiran’s last post describing his visits with Smiles across Miles in Aug 2015 was a surprise hit on my blog. He is back with another inspiring GUEST POST.
“I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet.” ~ Helen Keller
For all those who don’t know my passion, I’m part of the Smiles across Miles team, which I joined in Mar 2015. Our goal is to visit one orphanage on the 2nd Sunday of each month and help with groceries, materials, admission payments, uniform or anything which we can afford.
Last Sunday when the temperature was hovering around 40C, we visited Good Samaritan’s Shelter located in Alwal area in Hyderabad. We sponsored medicines, groceries, vests and cooler to them.
Founded on March 9, 2011, this NGO gives shelter to the homeless, old people abandoned by their children and long-time sufferers (TB or injuries) admitted in Gandhi Hospital but without guardians. There are presently 33 aged and handicapped people here.
As soon as I entered the shelter, I saw volunteers dressing the wounds of an old lady suffering from bed sores and screaming in pain. Trust me, the injuries were worse than anything I had ever seen. She was initially admitted in Gandhi Hospital, but since there was no guardian to take care of her, she was moved here.
Most of the people had injuries all over their bodies. It’s difficult to imagine the tasks involved in getting them dressed and taking proper care of them.
Jasper Paul is the youngest volunteer at this shelter. After attending his engineering college classes in the morning, he comes here daily in the evening and assists in dressing up all the injured people, changing the diapers of the old and feeding them.
We met a retired railway employee. We were shocked seeing him here. This old man was thrown out of his house by his own son. Only reason was that if he died early, his job would go to his son legally.
Seeing so much suffering places things for me in perspective. The next time I get angry and sad on small and trivial problems, this shelter will serve as a reminder.
Also, the work done by the volunteers like Jasper is simply inspirational to me. Financial help can be given by anyone, but this kind of service can be done by few. It’s really great on their part to dedicate their whole life to a cause.
NOTE from Pranav: Smiles across Miles have now grown to 100+ members from just 30 a year ago!