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- December 2012 Christmas celebrations - It was a fortnight long celebration. The ward was done up with balloons, festoons and danglers. The Christmas tree with all the lighting, the stars and the crib made a perfect setting in the foyer. Carols, choir, cakes and charity were in abundance. Santa Claus minus his reindeer was there everywhere greeting and cheering the kids. The children were spoilt for choice with goodies, toys, puppet shows, magic feats, dance, and music. Ms. Pauline Raine and her troupe from Velachery Church, The Cross Blood Foundation, Stella Maris College, and Bethel Happy Home Ministry were involved in the fun and celebration.
- Employees of Hindustan Computers Ltd. also entertained the children on 25th Dec 2012.
Following the outreach initiative of Biocon Pharma, Dr.Reddy's Laborataries conducted an art and drawing program on December 1st, 2012. Students from Sathyabhama College and Members of Chennai Volunteers executed the program to perfection. The children were given art materials and goodies. The regional manager of Dr.Reddy's supervised the event. It was really heart-warming to see the children and their parents participating in the event joyfully. Some of the exhibits were really catchy.
- In connection with the Gandhi Jayanthi celebrations, Kalvi Trust and Children's Club entertained and engaged the children with story telling sessions followed by a magic show by Magic Raja. The children and parents enjoyed the program. Each child was gifted a toilet kit and given flavoured milk on this occasion.
- Rose Day was celebrated at Mahesh Memorial Trust on 22nd September with grandeur. Rose Day is dedicated to those battling cancer all over the world. It all began when 12 year old Melinda Rose from Canada was diagnosed with Askin's Tumor, which was a rare form of Blood Cancer and inevitably terminal. This was in February 1994. Her parents were warned that she would not survive even a couple of weeks. Melinda had other plans and with her strong attitude and belief lived for 6 more months. In spite of great weakness brought on by the strong, painful and invasive treatment, her spirit was incredibly upbeat. She positively made each day in her remaining life meaningful. Activities like puppet show, jokes, songs and jugglery were provided by Udhavum Ullangal NGO from Chennai as part of the day. Children and parents enjoyed.
- In remembrance of Mahesh Mahadevan, his birthday on 27th September was celebrated at Mahesh Memorial Trust with the children, trustees and volunteers. Chocolates and t-shirts were distributed to the children.
- Ms. Anjali Chandrasekar, an 18-year-old, has collected nearly 1,500 books for children within a month and has donated it to the Paediatric ward of the Cancer Institute for setting up a library. She has to her credit several social outreach programs for the TANKER Kidney Foundation and for the benefit of special children. A national awardee and a recipient of Global Youth changemaker from the British government, she is now pursuing her studies in New York. The event of handing over of the books to Dr. Shantha was held on 12th August 2012. The trustees also were present to cheer and encourage the young lady for her efforts.
- In connection with the Independence Day celebration, a magic show by Mast. Yadunand was held on 15th August. The event began with an invocation song by Baby J. Swasthika. This was followed by the incredible magic feats which had the audience (children and parents) awe struck. Members of the Reiki Foundation, Chennai chapter, conducted a healing and wellness program. Dr. P. S. Lalitha, Chairman of the Foundation gave a pep talk on Reiki to the audience.
- Executives from Multivista Global Limited visited the paediatric ward and hosted lunch for the members of the ward. They were taken around the unit and briefed on the initiatives taken by Mahesh Memorial Trust. One of the executives from the organization sent in this feedback – "It was a great pleasure for all of us in sharing in many things which are unknown to us. We got an insight into what was happening at this ward. In future, if any one of us are planning to do some charity work we will definitely get back to you."
- All along, the doctors at the MMT ward have been insisting and emphasising on the need for personal hygiene and hand washing at every given opportunity. Reason why, "hand washing day" was observed on 28th July 2012 with the sponsorship from High Places International. Dr. Vidhu Bala and Dr. Vijayalakshmi from the Cancer Institute reiterated the need for hand washing for mothers and kids with parallels and anecdotes. The demo included a simulated hand wash technique followed by actual hand wash using the correct method and duration. Posters prepared by the sponsors were circulated amongst the parents. It was indeed an interactive and useful initiative which was well received and appreciated. As a follow-up to this, hand wash dispensers have been placed in all the wards and the dining hall as well.
- Ms. Kaveri Kalanithi Maaran from Sun Foundation visited the paediatric ward alongside her nieces and nephews and distributed goodies, biscuits and toys. She went from bed to bed and personally enquired about the children's progress with a 'get well' message. She also interacted with the mothers of children in the ward. Dr. Venkatraman took her around the wards and explained the various aspects of treatment. She was very appreciative of the student volunteers from Sathyabhama college and employees of Infosys Foundation who are spending quality time with the children every Saturday.
- Initiatives to complement and supplement the food given by the Cancer Institute has been of the highest priority. Close on the heels of Pediasure being supplied every day to the children, we are giving soy milk and high-protein Threptin biscuits. As per evaluation done by our dietician, we understand that they are well-received and relished. To further address the nutritional requirement, fortified porridge ("manna") is being give on two days. The sponsorship for the fist two weeks for the soy milk were done by employees of High Places International. Threptin biscuits were provided by Beroe Computers staff.
- The "manna mix" was sponsored by Mrs. and Mr.Arunachalam, the parents of our voluntary dietician Ms.S rividhya. Photos show Dr.Varalakshmi and Dr.Prabhu of the Cancer Institute distributing porridge during the launch on 20th July 2012.
- Message for sponsorship for Operation table (stainless steel) at the Pediatric ward was sent across through volunteers and well-wishers. Professors of IIT Madras (batch of 1986) readily agreed to donate towards the cost of the equipment. Photograph shows the happy and proud donors Prof. (Dr.) Suresh Govindarajan with his colleague formally presenting the equipment to the staff.
- A pep talk and a feedback session - that is the core purpose of the monthly SMILE meet. Mr. Arputhanesan engaged the parents of the children undergoing treatment in the ward with his encouraging and morale boosting talk citing various anecdotes and stories. This was followed by Dr.Venkatraman Radhakrishnan who gave his customary suggestions on upkeep, hygiene and nutrition. The parents also grabbed this opportunity to clear their doubts and air their views. This is an initiative by the Oncopsychologist wing of the Cancer Institute.
- The Chennai Volunteers visited the MMT Children's Ward on Saturday, July 7, 2012 and spent quality time with some children. This was a recreational session, starting with introductions, an ice-breaker game and then there was no looking back! Dumb Charades, Passing the parcel, Simon Says, London Statue, Songs and dance performance, blind folded game to pin the tail, dancing with the children and then some more… The focus was on gentle fun, entertainment and interaction with the children.
- Mike Nithavarianakis, Deputy High Commissioner, Britain paid a courtesy visit to the Pediatric ward of the Cancer Institute, Adyar on 21st June 2012. A warm welcome was given by several of our trustees. He was taken around the unit and Dr.Sagar, Director, Cancer institute explained in detail the course of medical treatment given to the children. The serving doctors and nurses were introduced to him. Interacting and enthusing the kids, he was very appreciative of the other associated activities happening at the institute. He patiently spent time listening receptively at the Montessori unit, the psycho oncologists' evaluation concepts, art and painting education by Dr. Jayanthi and the relaxation therapy to the mothers of the children undergoing treatment. At the conference hall, the holistic approach to the treatment was explained to him by Dr. Venkatraman through a powerpoint presentation. Immensely pleased with the activities, he was hopeful on exchange programs and sponsorship on medicines and protocols. Later he met the Chairperson Dr. Shantha along with the trustees.
- Complementing medication and nutrition, the doctors collectively feel warding off infection is mandatory for recovery. Keeping this in mind, hand washing exercise has been introduced to mothers and children. A lunch was hosted by Sahaatiya Trust on July 5th. Seizing this opportunity, the hand washing program was launched by our dieticians. Employees of High Places International are willing to impart and cultivate this habit at MMT as part of their CSR efforts (corporate social responsibility) besides providing other nutritional support.
- Children undergoing chemo therapy should have food and nourishment. Precisely why a nutritional supplement "Pedia sure" (chocolate flavor) from Nestle has been selected by the dieticians and doctors of the ward at the Cancer Institute. Sponsored by Sreyas Computers, this supplement complements the requirement. The milk that is supplied in the evening is fortified with this supplement and provided to the children. Dr. Venkatraman and Dr. Prashant supervised the distribution along with Ms.Bindu, the chief nurse of MMT ward, on 26th June 2012. With more sponsors in the pipeline, we hope to carry on this exercise for at least a month to begin with.
- SMILE (Smart, Mischievous, Innocent, Loving and Energetic) is an initiatve by Psyco Oncology Department of the Cancer Institute. It is a forum for doctor patient interaction and feedback. In the photograph, Dr.Venkatraman Radhakrishnan is seen educating the parents of the kids undergoing treatment on hygiene, right type of nutrition and care from their side. Parents seized this opportunity to clarify various doubts with him.
The members of Lions Club Madipakkam landed at MMT yet again to celebrate the marriage anniversaries of some of their couples. On this occasion, they donated a pedestal fan to the ward. They distributed eats and play things to the kids. Dr.Manikandan received the gifts.
- The members of the Rotaract club engaged the kids at MMT by screening cartoons, interacting and playing with them. One of the members commented - "It was a tremendously fun afternoon spent with kids, who despite all odds remain cheerful. Kudos to Mahesh Memorial Trust. Seeing a few seconds of joy on the face of the kids in this testing time of their lives gives warmth in the heart difficult to explain."
- The relaxation and meditation therapy to the care givers has gone full steam. Stress, frustration and hopelessness confronts the mothers of the patients. Keeping this in mind, therapy has been organised on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 2.30-4.30pm at the meditation room dedicated for this purpose. Psycho oncologists, headed by Mr.Sunder, inaugurated the program. From the response generated, we feel it is being well received.
- Post graduate students from PSG college of arts and science engaged the kids in craft making and singing. The children were only too willing to take part in the activities. The doctors firmly believe that these types of diversions keep the kids away from the traumatic treatment they undergo for months at the institute.
- Art Competition — It was the cherished desire of The Reiki foundation, Chennai chapter, (the members of which conduct weekly healing therapy at MMT) to conduct an art competition for the patients and kids of the care givers too. It was held on 21st April 2012. Volunteers from The Reiki foundation engaged, enthused and encouraged the kids. Ms. Janna, the art therapist from Canada, also supervised the competition. The best artwork was given prizes. Ms. Ranga Kumar presided and distributed the prizes. Dr.Venkatraman, who has taken over as the resident paediatric oncologist, was also present. M/s Print Shop P Ltd provided the art materials generously. The company's president graced the occasion. He distributed certificates and goodies to the children at MMT.
- Mothers’ Day drawings and paintings by the children.
Lions Club District 324 donated two 14inch televisions to MMT. They are willing to sponsor the treatment for kids individually and any other assistance required. Lion Club President Mr.Manickam and other members handed over the television sets to our administrator Manohar.
A pep talk was given by Dr. Selladurai, Professor, Anna University, Chennai, who was celebrating his wife's birthday on April 20th at MMT. The message of upkeep, hygiene, acceptance and cancer care was delivered by a guest performer - Mr.Santhanam on this occasion.
- Ms. Janna, practising art therapist from George Washington University was at MMT for over four months on Tuesday and Friday every week. She engaged the children on art and paintings. A presentation was given to the doctors of MMT before her departure back to Canada on art as therapy and her experiences at MMT. A memento was given to her on behalf of MMT thanking her services. It was the first presentation since the plasma television was installed at the conference hall.
- 2012 — Prof. Dr. S.Selladurai from Anna University, Chennai, celebrated his 50th birthday at the Cancer Institute. He has donated an LED on this occasion. His family members also joined him in distributing eats to the kids. Dr.Mannar Jawahar, Vice Chancellor, Anna University, personally cheered the kids and distributed the goodies. It was a touching gesture. Click here for Pictures
- Mr David Jackson and Mr Scott Green from Toyota Motor Sales Inc, alongside employees of IT major Cognisant Technologies Ltd., visited the institute and donated a sum of Rs.20,000 (cheque and cash) to MMT. Their feedback: "Thank you for your awesome work and service to those most needy. We will not forget our visit and look forward to next time. You run an amazing place. God bless".
- The Lullas from the Madras Round Table alongside Mr.Krishnan distributed and enjoyed lunch with the kids. In fact, they had donated the Laminar hood (medicine mixer and dispenser) for MMT earlier. From their feedback we get to know that they are very appreciative of the efforts of all associated with the MMT for taking care of the kids. They have promised to contribute in future too.
- Students and faculty from JBAS COLLEGE (formerly SIET) engaged the mothers and kids in arts, crafts, paper bag making etc. They also enjoyed story telling sessions and painting. Click here for Pictures
- Lions Club Madipakkam at MMT 'DINE WITH DIVINE PROGRAMME'- Lions Club Madipakkam, represented here by President Mr. Manisekar, Secretary Mr. Siddharthan, along with some of members, visited the Cancer Institute and distributed drawing materials, eatables and juices to the kids. They were accompanied by Mr.Murugan Jayaraman and family from Australia who had sponsored the program. Click here for Pictures
- 2011 — Lunch is organised for the children 10 times a month, breakfast 5 times a month and a snack of hi-protein beans and lentils is provided every day. Every month, 2 new movies are screened. Every year, festivals like Diwali, Christmas, New Years, Eid, are celebrated with a grand party, gifts, meals – for Christmas, Santa delivers the gifts while Diwali is celebrated with crackers. Click here for slide show.
- Every month deserving children are identified and Rs 50,000 is paid from the MMT coffers for their treatment.
- 2010 — Installed equipment’s for the ICU – Ventilators, oxygen cylinders, ICU beds and equipment needed for an ICU were provided by MMT.
- 2010 — On Independence Day, a tatoo work shop was organized for the children at the Cancer Institute Chocolates, biscuits and fruits were distributed - the children had a great time. See Pictures here.
- 2009 — The Mahesh Memorial Paediatric Oncology Centre was inaugurated.
- 2009 — Theatre Workshops conducted twice a month – Another form of therapy which the children enjoy with volunteers teaching them basics of acting and voice modulation and dance.
- 2009 — Music Workshops conducted twice a month – Another form of therapy where the children are taught simple songs like bhajans, nursery rhymes and film songs which they enjoy.
- 2008 — Prosthesis for 10 children – Children who have sarcoma (bone cancer) were earlier amputated but now with the prosthesis, the tumor is removed and the limb is saved. Each prosthesis costs Rs 75,000 and this was donated by MMT.
- 2008 — Chemo support for 30 children – Each child with blood related cancer goes through minimum of 20 chemotherapy sessions which is expensive. MMT supports the chemotherapy treatment for children from poorer economic backgrounds.
- 2008 — Radiation support for 30 children – Children go through a minimum of 20 sittings of radiation. MMT supports them for their treatment.
- 2008 — Tables and Stools provided for the Dining Hall – Comfortable furniture for 40 children was provided by MMT.
- 2008 — Materials purchased for Art Therapy which happens twice weekly – Children are taught painting, drawing, origami and craft activities by volunteers and MMT provides the material costs for the same.
- 2008 — Biscuits and Soya Milk distributed daily – Children need hi-protein supplements and this is provided by MMT.
- 2006 - Outreach programme on ill effects of tobacco conducted for staff of Ford India Ltd. Click here for details.
- 2005 — An ambulance was donated to the Palliative care unit of the Cancer Institute.
- 2005 — MMT supported financially the Cancer Institute when it had a mega exhibition on cancer awareness - a 3-day exhibition was held in the city and it was a great success. The general public as well as schools and colleges attended it.
- 2004 — Outreach programme — 150 women working in a garment factory were educated on cancer awareness by Dr Meenakshi Rajan. This was followed by a one-hour workshop on early detection, which was a very interactive session.
- 2003 — A R Rahman's Unity of Light fundraiser featuring several famed Indian playback singers and musicians was held. See the concert pictures here.