Giving is a selfless joy. But giving can also be an extremely satisfying and fulfilling feeling, especially when you realise it has transformed the life of a little child fighting a big critical illness like a heart disorder, against all odds.
Given reasonable cause, most of us are happy to write a cheque or pull out a few banknotes in support of a cause we find worthy. The sheer numbers of such folks who can be targeted for a charitable exercise, and the low degree of government oversight is probably one reason for the multitudes of charitable and social organisations out there.
Do you know however, that for every rupee we donate, especially to those organisations that have been around forever and have virtually become household names, only a percentage of the donation actually reaches the intended recipient for the intended purpose? That’s because, in order to accomplish their set purpose, organisations incur costs as well – fuel, transportation, salaries, premises and advertising, among other areas. The final percentage depends on the number of such heads and how effective overall management is.
Another point to consider is that most such organisations are staffed by those who choose to be there because they believe in the organisation’s core purpose and those who work there because they need a job. While there are of course overlaps, these qualities are mostly mutually exclusive and there are usually more of the latter than that of the former, i.e. those who need a job usually outnumber those who spend their time for the cause.
Consider this. How about an organisation manned mostly and almost solely by believers? Suppose most of them aren’t paid either? How about if the organisation was kind of adopted by two stalwarts of their respective industries, who took care of staples like office premises, equipment etc.?
You do see where I’m heading, right?
Finally, we come to the Genesis Foundation, the seeds for which were sown back in 1983, when the founders, Prema and Jyoti Sagar lost their child, Samir, to a heart disorder, which led to efforts to reach out to children who required critical, life-saving surgery. The guiding ethos at the time was, why any child should succumb to curable conditions simply due to lack of surgical/medical intervention? Genesis Foundation holds regular fund-raising events all around India and is manned mostly by believers or volunteers, with only a handful of paid employees allocated to core functions. All the funds raised go into the treatment of critically ill, under-privileged children with heart disorders as all overheads are borne by the Founder-Trustees, Prema and Jyoti.
From Genesis-Foundation: Three-year-old Pihu was the light of her mother Roopam’s eyes. She was born a blue baby and needed surgery, which, as the only earning member of the family, Roopam couldn’t afford. The surgery went off well. And then in 2016, as a 6-year-old, she needed another surgery. Again, Roopam was at a loss to figure out how to afford the surgery. Once more, Pihu fought the odds and is now all set to focus on school and her friends. And her mother Roopam is dreaming of a bright future for her daughter.
As a result of the thought put into the management of the Foundation, and the resources contributed by the Founder-Trustees, which covers all overhead costs of the Genesis Foundation, 100% of donated funds reach the intended recipient for the intended purpose, which is impossible for any other organisation in the category, unless they have a similar arrangement. Apart from that statistic, here’s another meaningful number – the Genesis Foundation has thus far helped over 1,200 children receive life saving surgery!
At CaL, we’ve been trying for years, to find a way to help children, without much success. You see, we were trying to do it ourselves, and quickly came up against tall barriers such as competency. We just didn’t have the skills and knowledge to turn our desires into reality, regardless of our hearts being in the right place. Our member base of nearly 90% women, both working and homemakers, are always ready to jump in with their time, effort and money to help a worthy cause and now, all of us have a great partner who can focus our outreach efforts in creating greater awareness about children in need and is brilliantly equipped to make those efforts count.
In fact, the very next event that’s coming up is their annual fundraiser, Kasauli Rhythm & Blues Festival, held on Easter Weekend, April 14 – 16 at Baikunth Resorts in Kasauli, Himachal Pradesh. Each year the team at Genesis Foundation handpicks talented artistes from established and upcoming groups, to create a memorable musical weekend for music lovers who believe in the cause – the support of critically ill children. Read more about it here.
When numbers increase, desensitisation tends to begin creeping in, people become mere statistics and saved lives, a by-product. I can assure you, if the foundation had saved one life so far, that one life would have been immensely grateful and so would have been those around that child. Again, we’re immensely happy and proud to be connected to the Genesis Foundation and hope we can spread news of their good work and help in saving many more young lives.