Monday, August 14, 2006

A True Hero

Meet Vidyakar, the founder of Udavum Karangal (Helping Hands). Vidyakar bears testament to what true grit and determination can achieve. Affectionately known as 'Pappa' , he is my hero.

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Born in a village in Kollegal - Mysore - Karnataka in a poor family Mr.Vidyaakar was provided with shelter and a prolonged education culminating in Master degree in social work by Mr. Ramakrishnan of Chennai. His Mentor's words " Help others" became the guiding force for Vidyaakar in starting Udavum Karangal (Helping Hands) as a guidance centre way back in 1983, in the slums of NSK Nagar, Chennai.

"It all began when I carried an eleven month old baby which was found abandoned in a theatre counter in Chennai. It has nowhere else to go. It needed care and I felt a sudden urge in me to take care of the baby".

From that day onwards I came across many such unfortunate victims, including AIDS patients. With the dedicated help of about 75 volunteers, Udavum Karangal today has become a haven for 2000 socially under-privileged persons.

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