It was October 2007 that I was introduced to Pat Ryan, who runs a charity called as Express Linkup IT. She is an amazing lady. Very few people actually have my full and utter respect but this lady is one of them. What she has been doing for the past so many years with so little money or support for so many people is absolutely amazing.
I am reminded of Winston Churchill's quote at the time of the world war II, this is what he said,
- The gratitude of every home in our Island, in our Empire, and indeed throughout the world, except in the abodes of the guilty, goes out to the British airmen who, undaunted by odds, unwearied in their constant challenge and mortal danger, are turning the tide of the World War by their prowess and by their devotion. Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few. All hearts go out to the fighter pilots, whose brilliant actions we see with our own eyes day after day…
At that time, it was for fighter pilots, but this time, it is for wonderful women like Pat Ryan, who have silently and quietly helped hundreds of thousands of children. She literally wowed the heart out of me.
And it resonated with me. We are talking about kids who are long term ill.
These kids do not get any educational technology to cheer their minds up.
Keep the mind engaged and the body lives longer. This is the problem, the kids are ill, go into the hospital and do what? they fall behind their studies, their minds are not engaged, you cant just stick a book at them, the current kids are growing up with a whole world in front of them in the form of the internet. So these children are given laptops or home pc's which they are using to study, to develop their minds, their hearts and bodies are engaged. (a disguised photograph of one of the children helped with a laptop and printer from the charity, just look at how her eyes are hungrily looking at the laptop, brings tears to your eyes, I tell you)
Many moons back, I was long term ill as well, flat on my back for months on end, literally months. And that's in India where patient care is, well, interesting. Once you have lain there in the same bloody bed, looking at the same people who you just associate with pain and hurt, staring at the peeling white painted wall, when you have started naming each paint crack and curl out of sheer boredom, you desire some kind of intellectual stimulation.. And you can only flirt so much with those poxy harridans who clean the wards.
So I joined the charity as a trustee. To help out. A lovely bunch of people in the charity even. It became clear that the demand side of the equation was very high, we could end up having more than 100 children being long term ill per day. It was the supply side which was the issue and in the next few post, will talk more about that journey. Since I also dabble around in writing for magazines and stuff, I get to know about people who are in the media field and will also talk about my attempts to get some media contact going. I will also talk about how I am seeing the charity sector going. For what its worth, I have been invited to join the Worshipful Company of Information Technologists and hope to see what I can do for this charity via that channel.