Citizenship report on visit to THE EARTH SAVIOURS FOUNDATION (TESF) on Tuesday, 18th August 2015.
This Foundation is an internationally recognised NGO founded in 2008 by Mr. Ravi Kalra. He is a social activist and environmentalist. It is dedicated to serve the less privileged and protect the environment. Some of its missions include the following.
Old age home to look after homeless and abandoned senior citizens
Rescue and rehabilitation of the mentally disabled
Rehabilitation centre and school for poor children
Jia Nari Niketan to shelter destitute women
Battle to save the environment and a “DO NOT HONK” campaign to reduce noise pollution
After many telephonic conversations, and with the support of the proceeds collected from Shram Daan, we decided to contribute Rs 15,000 towards building material required for the Foundation’s new shelter for abandoned senior citizens. This was their immediate necessity as the previous shelter had burned down and they were forced to relocate to a new place because of their total loss of infrastructure in the fire.
4 students ( Ritwik Arora, Pratishtha Kohli, Pulkit Goyal and Aayushi Mittal) and Ms. Sangeeta Aswani reached the ashram and were overwhelmed to see nearly 200 senior citizens being cared for with great compassion. There were three make-shift shelters, separate ones for the men, the women and for those bed-ridden. There were some who could participate in daily chores like cleaning, cutting vegetables, cooking and knitting. They were delighted to see us, many of them even greeting us in great enthusiasm in English! The stories of two of the inmates affected us very deeply.
MALTI – she could not talk but was continuously smiling. Abandoned by her family, she had basic skills for hair- styling and knitting. She was excited to show us some of her work which she pulled out from under her bed, hidden away like a treasure. Impressed, we promised to send her wool for the activity she loves.
MADHURI – a lean, dusky attractive girl in her late 20’s, she was abandoned by her parents in the hospital after she fainted from a life-threatening brain clot. Fearing medical expenses and permanent mental damage, her family never returned for her. Miraculously, she survived but with partial loss of memory. In an effort to rehabilitate her, TESF volunteers tried to find her home and family but failed. She is very well qualified with an M.Sc Physics (Hons). However due to her memory loss, she is not able to restart her life.
We returned with mixed feelings. it was heartwarming to see the selfless dedication of the TESF workers and at the same time, we felt sad to that there are such few places for the marginalised members of our society.
Ms. S. Aswani, Citizenship Coordinator.