It was on December 27th, 2022, a red car pulled into the Hope House premises and there was a family of three - mom, dad and their teen age son - Arnav. This is an Indian origin family but based in UK and visiting the family (in Vellore) for Christmas.
I worked with Arnav's grandma and aunt at Christian Medical College in the 90's but I never met Arnav's family before so it was all new faces to interact with.
They came to learn more about the Hope House and its activities. Like we always do, I poured out my heart to help them to understand why we do what we do. Throughout the talk they were listening quite intently, they kept nodding thier heads without much interruption leaving me puzzled if they were following me or not.
At the end of my talk, they asked for any needs that we have that they can meet. When someone asks a question like that, it is extremely uncomfortable to answer because you do not want to state the needs that are completely out of whack with their budget. To be on the safer side, I started off with smaller items but then they opened up and said that their 13 year old son - Arnav, has this intense passion to raise funds for the chartable organizations around the world.
Knowing thier intent, I opened up with our bigger needs and they cross questioned me in every possibly way to know the exact nature of our need(s) that Arnav can work to meet. I gave them four different items that we would need (Lactogen1 baby forumla, baby diapers, installing mosquito mesh for all the windows and doors of the building and a car to transport our chidlren with special needs to the hospital and back).
They said that they will go back to UK and stay in touch with me. January .... February months came and went but no communication from this family and I thought may be they have forgotten but then in the beginning of March, Arnav's mom called and asked about our needs that they can zero in on and I told them that we badly need a transport vehicle because we care for the children with special needs and almost every day we go to the hospital and currently we use three wheeler auto which is expensive and also unsafe.
On March 7th, Arnav's campaign link was sent to me and his target amount is 1500 British pounds. It touched all our hearts so deeply that we kept thinking that in this day and age why would a teenager wants to raise funds for an obscure charitable organization in a small town in India? I couldn't think of any other reason than his family and his upbringing to have instilled right values towards the less fortunate.
I promised Arnav's mother that I will make a post on the social media to help Arnav to reach his goal to help ourselves. So, if you live in the UK, you can do two things:
Help Arnav to reach his goal by donating at this link
If you have a child, please encourage them to get invovled with the social work in the community some way (it need not always be raising funds).
By the way, Arnav has already supported different kinds of charitable organizations before with his fundraising efforts. We wish him all the very best in this task and for his future. God bless Arnav. Thank you Aps and Joe for bringing up such a wonderful child.