There are few who dare to dream and fewer who make that dream a reality. One such person we came across is Subhashini Mistry. A 65-year old woman, who lost her husband at the age of 23 due to lack of medical treatment, has today set up a hospital to make sure everyone doesn’t suffer the same fate as she did.
Subhashini was born in a poor family of farmers in West Bengal. At the age of 12 she was married and at the age of 20 she had four children. At the age of 23, her husband passed away due to lack of good treatment for an illness at a government hospital. Subhashini was left all alone with her four kids.
It was indeed difficult to raise four kids, but she never gave up dreaming - a dream to see at least one of her children become a doctor and building a hospital for the poor.
For the next 20 years, she worked as housemaid, labourer and vegetable seller from which she saved Rs.20,000. She also educated one of her children to become a doctor with the help of philanthropists.
With the amount she saved, she bought one acre of land at her husband’s native village, which she eventually sold. Each family in the village contributed around Rs.900, from which she built a shed for the hospital. Though initially small, the treatment for patients started in this hospital. She went out searching for doctors who could come at least for a few hours or once a month to treat the patients..
But it wasn’t easy for her. During monsoons, the water use to enter the hospital as it was a small shed. To build a concrete roof, she required much more money. So Subhashini and her son Ajoy decided to ask for help.
Ajoy spoke to a Member of Parliament and after much persistence, the MP gave support and helped them build a new hospital. And finally in 1993, the foundation stone was laid. The hospital was named as Humanity Hospital.
It is today spread over three acres and has the best of doctors and medical equipment. Major surgeries for the poor are done for less than Rs.5000 and minor ailments are treated for under Rs.10. Her son who is a doctor is taking care of the administration and one of her daughters is a nurse.
Isn’t Subhashini’s story an inspiring one? Hats off to our Unsung Hero - Subhashini Mistry! See more stories of change.
Sources: Mahesh Bhat (not the director!), My thoughts Blog and The Weekend Leader