Sunday, December 23, 2012

Personal experience encourages Peter to feed the needy

K J Peter stands tall, both literally and figuratively as he has dedicated his life for the poor and the needy. Everyday, he reaches the isolation ward of the Ernakulam general hospital at the crack of the dawn to bathe the patients
and dress them up, and also distributes food to the patients. It has been eight years since he has commenced his mission of offering service to those in need.

 Interestingly, Peter says that for the past eight years his service has never encountered a single hurdle. However, there was a phase in Peter’s life when he was hardly aware of the melancholy
of life until he was struck by an illness which affected his mobility. He says that during those days, the patients could get free food only thrice a week.

The rest of the four days were a real nightmare without food. “My disability and the difficulties I encountered during my course of treatment made me think of an arrangement that could be of immense help to the people,” he says. Peter says, seven years back, taking up such a venture was not an easy task. “I knocked many doors for help but could not get favourable answers. Hence, I went and collected money from various sources which helped me to distribute food to the patients,” he said.

Currently, Peter distributes food for around 1,200 patients in five government hospitals in the district. The destitute patients of Taluk Hospital, Fort Kochi, Mattancherry Women and Children’s Hospital, Malipuram Health Centre and Fort Kochi Dharamshala gets his help. The Ernakulam District Collector has honoured him for his services in April and the Indian Medical Association (IMA) has honoured him for his service.
The seven-year-long service has now enabled him to garner other arrangements to help the destitute patients.

His trust, Rosary of Divine Charitable Trust, now has two ambulances for emergency situations. The food for patients is prepared at his house at Oachanthuruthu. Peter says that he gets incessant help from his family and neighbours to prepare the required food. “About 110 kg of rice is prepared here and half of it is cooked in the kitchen entrusted
by the Ernakulam General Hospital at,” he says. Sadly, the number of destitute patients in the Ernakulam General Hospital is increasing day-by-day, but Peter’s presence proves to be true solace for all of them.

Published in the New Indian Express

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