Not everyone is blessed with a happy family. Bereft of one , a number of children stay in orphanages. Be it economical or emotional, the needs of these children are numerous and diverse. It is not only in the orphanages but in a number of well-to-do homes too people crave for love and affection. Deepavali is one such occasion where people can satisfy each other yearnings by celebrating the festival together.

“The festival is not only synonymous with new clothes, lip-smacking sweets and crackers but also means sharing love. It is the magnanimous lot who light the lamps during the festival at various homes in the city. They come to our hostels and orphanages as a family and spend the festival in gay abandon,” says Maruthi (93810 07304) a trustee of ‘The Sarvodaya Trust’ which runs a number of hostels, schools and colleges all over the State.

The inmates of these hostels celebrate Deepavali with the help of funds given by philanthropists.

Says Maruti: Donors love to celebrate the festival with us. They visit our hostels even days before the event. They bring clothes, crackers and sweets for the inmates. Some even bring tailors to take measurements to stitch new clothes for our girls. Bureaucrats and officials from various Government services bring in cracker cartons to our hostels and burst them along with our children. They mingle with us as one family and this gives us a lot of satisfaction. This year donors will begin to visit SRS Sarvodaya Girls Hostel, Chetpet, (where about 90 girls stay) on the eve of Deepavali. Visitors will continue to shower blessings and gifts on the inmates on the day of Deepavali too. Sarvodaya Trust has about 11 hostels in 10 districts in the State. They run four residential schools and seven (middle and primary) schools.

Nalmanam

“Donors have already given the boys of our orphanage two sets of clothes and a few others have promised one more. On the day of Deepavali inmates will be given special meals and breakfast and a number of philanthropists will spend the day with our boys,” said K. Paribaskar (98411 87738), founder of Nalmanam India, an orphanage at Villivakkam.

There are about 26 boys at the orphanage. Nearly 20 of them attend the primary and secondary sections of Singaram Pillai School.

Nalmanam also procures crackers in bulk from Sivakasi. The assorted gift box (with 30 items) will be sold at Rs 700 per gift box. It also sells walas and shots. Those who want to buy crackers from Nalmanam can call 2618 7835.

Anandam

Inmates of Anandam, a home for senior-citizens, celebrated Deepavali along with the children of the executive members of the home, well-wishers, and friends. The elderly people said that were bursting crackers after a very long time. The inmates were provided with new clothes and sweets and savouries. Feast will be arranged on the day of Deepavali. “The welfare organisation is thankful to all those who have lent support,” says Bhageerathi, managing trustee of the home. Anandam is at Anna Street, Gangai Nagar, Kallikuppam. For details, contact 26860366/26580806.

Hope School for Special Children

The festival was celebrated in Hope School for Special Children as well. The children were taught to take care of themselves while handling crackers. “Every year sponsors help us to celebrate Deepavali. This year also we have sent appeals to philanthropists to lend a helping hand,” says V. Nagarani, Managing Trustee, Hope Foundation. Hope Foundation is at 6-B/26, Sarangapani Street, Krishnapuram, Ambattur. For details, contact 2658 6066 / 98413 30330.

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