2024年2月20日
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A Life Devoted: Dr. Sankurathri's Journey of Healing and Kindness #GoodDeedsInTroubledTimes

A Life Devoted: Dr. Sankurathri's Journey of Healing and Kindness #GoodDeedsInTroubledTimes

In this troubled world characterized by conflict and disorder, kindness serves as the potential antidote to dispel discord and restore peace. Every act of kindness, regardless of its scale, has the potential to ripple through society, creating a positive impact that resonates globally. Kindhearted people who have sacrificed and devoted their lives to noble causes stand at the forefront of this movement, exemplifying the power of kindness in aiding and uplifting others. Extending kindness can be as simple as initiating small yet meaningful acts.

"Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world." - Howard Zinn

Dr. Chandrasekhar Sankurathri, a beacon of kindness, serves as a remarkable example of selflessness, dedicating his life to the welfare of the underprivileged in Andhra Pradesh, India. In 1989, he established the Sankurathri Foundation in loving memory of his family. The Sarada Vidyalayam, founded in 1992, in the name of his daughter, provides free education to economically disadvantaged children in rural areas.

Furthering his altruistic endeavors, Dr. Sankuratrhi founded the Srikiran Institute of Ophthalmology in 1993, named after his son. The Sankurathri Foundation actively engages in multifaceted philanthropy, implementing educational programs through Sarada Vidyalayam, healthcare initiatives through the Srikiran Institute of Ophthalmology, and disaster relief programs through Spandana. Dr. Chandrasekhar Sankuratri's legacy is one of compassion, leaving an indelible mark on the lives of countless individuals through his enduring acts of kindness and service to the community.

In recognition of his outstanding contributions, Dr. Chandrasekhar Sankurathri was bestowed with the Padma Shri award on Republic Day 2023. The Padma Shri is a civilian award for distinguished service in various fields such as art, literature, science and engineering, medicine, sports, public affairs, and social work presented by the Government of India. Despite enduring personal tragedy, his resilience and dedication to serving those in need serve as a powerful testament to the transformative impact of compassion and commitment to a higher purpose.

Dr. Sankurathri suffered a great loss in a tragic crash of Air India Flight 182, that claimed the lives of his wife and two children in 1985. After three years of mourning, he left Ottawa, to his origins in Andhra Pradesh. He sacrificed his career as a biologist and scientific evaluator for the Ministry of Health in Canada. Looking at the plight of rural residents in his hometown, he decided to be a force for the upliftment of the underprivileged who didn’t have access to education and healthcare. 

 

Sarada Vidyalayam, named after the his daughter Sarada, provides quality education infused with human values, discipline, exposure to fine arts, crafts, and holistic child development. Operated entirely cost-free for parents, the school is sustained by generous donors worldwide. Committed to alleviating the financial burden on underprivileged families, the foundation offers complimentary education, books, uniforms, transportation, nutritious meals, medical checkups, and medicines to all children. Over 4,500 children have benefited from this initiative to date.

The school has empowered rural children, enabling them to attain higher positions in society. The school has not only shaped the lives of numerous children for the better but has also shifted parental attitudes toward education, contributing to the eradication of child labor and child marriages in the region.

Named in honor of his son, the Srikiran Institute of Ophthalmology is a healthcare facility that caters to the vision needs of the community. With an impressive capacity, the institute serves 750 individuals daily through outpatient services and conducts around 80 surgeries each day. It is committed to delivering high-quality eye care without discrimination based on paying capacity, ensuring that no patient is turned away due to financial constraints. Over the past three decades, the institute has provided quality eye care services to more than 3.8 million people, with 65% of these services offered free of charge to the economically disadvantaged in four districts of Andhra Pradesh. A remarkable feat is the restoration of eyesight to over 345,000 blind individuals, with 90% of these procedures being conducted free of cost for the benefit of the poor and needy.

The Spandana Disaster Relief Center was established with the primary goal of offering vital assistance to the impoverished and those in need during times of disaster. The relief services provide shelter, food, drinking water, and, on occasion, essential medicines. The region is often plagued by cyclones, resulting in frequent flooding, making it crucial for the Spandana team to respond promptly.

Operating through an emergency relief program, Spandana's dedicated volunteers ensure that essential items reach people who have been evacuated to higher ground during these calamities. To aid them in rebuilding their lives, the program supplies clothing, utensils, and groceries, facilitating a quicker return to their normal routines. The program also extends support to those affected by various other natural disasters such as fires, earthquakes, the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as certain medical emergencies.

Through tireless efforts and unwavering dedication, Dr. Chandrasekhar has played a significant role in uplifting the lives of the downtrodden. His selfless service and compassion have been instrumental in bringing about positive change. Many individuals have experienced the transformative impact of free education and health services, leading improved and better lives.

 

InSpirit