Reaching out

Charity does not always mean parting with your hard-earned money,it could be as simple as donating old newspapers.

Written by Sharvari Patwa | Published: March 4, 2012 2:44 am

Venus Charitable Medical Hospital raises funds to treat the needy by selling scrap donated by people

Charity does not always mean parting with your hard-earned money,it could be as simple as donating old newspapers. Venus Charitable Medical Hospital has found a unique way of gathering help for those who undergo dialysis or cancer treatment. It goes door-to-door collecting old newspapers,magazines,books etc,which are sold to help those unable to undergo treatment for financial reasons.

Seven months after it started the initiative,the trust has collected over Rs 4 lakh by selling over 40,000 kg of old newspapers and other scrap,collected from around 920 families and institutions.

The subsidised treatment at the hospital had helped Shipra Singh,23,cut down her medical expenses by almost 50 per cent. She had lost her father three years ago and it seemed almost impossible to fund her dialysis treatment that she had been undergoing since she was 17. “With the help from the hospital,I am at least able to afford the dialysis,which needs to be done thrice a week.”

Shipra is now looking for a job. “I have become more positive in life and want to stand on my own now that I know that I will be fit enough to work”.

The secretary of the charitable trust,Jayprakash Thakur (52),says,“The whole idea of giving time or money usually makes it difficult for people to come out of their comfort zone. Even Vastu Shastra says the money received after disposing old and useless items should not be brought back home as it brings in negative energy. We encouraged people to instead donate all those items and help poor and needy patients”.

The trust now has regular donors such as schools,private and semi-government institutions and many housing societies.

The list of donors include chemical factory Rashtriya Chemical & Fertilizers (RCF),Radha Krishna School in Goregaon,D G Khaitan International School in Malad,Green Lawns High School in Worli. “Once we started the drive and the word spread,there were housing colonies,which would call every month to donate their scrap. For example,200 families in a residential colony in Powai donate about 300-400 kg of scrap every month. We also have hotels giving us 300-400 kg of newspapers,magazines every week”,says Aftab Alam,administrator.

The collections are done throughout the city from Churchgate to Borivali and even Bhayander and Bhiwandi. The money collected along with other donations have helped the hospital treat some patients free. It has about 65 regular patients who come for dialysis,of which three are treated free. The trust also uses the money to fund the education of children of poor and needy patients.

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