Prerna Sewa Trust – Decades of Selfless Work Supporting Poor Patients in Bhopal
Akshay Naik 23 April 2022
Sardar Dayal Singh Saluja, on a visit to Hamidia Hospital (Bhopal) in 1994, was so overcome with grief at seeing the plight of poor patients, that he took the initiative to provide medicines to poor patients, arranged and paid for tests and also took the time to provide daily meals.
This began the journey of Prerna Sewa Trust, a non-profit organisation that has been performing selfless acts of service for poor patients and winning hearts of the local community for almost three decades. 
While doctors initially objected Mr Saluja’s wandering in the corridors and lobbies of the hospital, they soon gained confidence in his selfless acts of social service and other social workers from the local area started volunteering. In the early days of its operation, Prerna did not have an office and only operated from the corridors of Hamidia Hospital. Impressed by the dedication of its workers and quality of service, the Hospital authorities allotted a room to Prerna within the Hospital’s complex.   
Over the years, Prerna grew in size and diversified its operations. Today, while also providing meals and medicines, Prerna occasionally arranges treatment for poor rural children with congenital heart ailments and escorts them to Bengaluru for treatment at no cost. 
Through the decades, Prerna has mobilised a cadre of dedicated volunteers who work day and night to carry forward the mission of its Founder. They have many poignant and heartbreaking stories to tell, from their interaction with the patients, their relatives and the medical staff at the Hamidia Hospital.
One such story, involved Ms Rashmi Bawa, the treasurer of Prerna Trust, while she was serving meals to the patients in the hospital. She noticed a young man who had accompanied his wife to the Hospital and had not touched the food placed before him. He was sitting besides his wife’s bed who was covered with a blanket. When asked why he did not eat his meal, the young man replied saying that his wife was dead and that he had no means to carry her body to his village or arrange for her cremation. Prerna volunteers immediately swung into action and a van was arranged to transport the body, and the husband was given money to organise the funeral. 
Another time a young boy from Jhansi, who had run away from his home after an argument with his parents, landed up in the Hospital bleeding profusely with injured legs. The parents of this young boy had launched a frantic search for their son, while the wounded child refused to share his address with the doctors. A psychiatric treatment was arranged for the young child, his home address was eventually coaxed out by the volunteers of Prerna and he was re-united with his family.
The volunteers of Prerna have many stories to tell and messages to convey. The people of Bhopal have extended their wholehearted and unstinted support to the activities of Prerna and it is heartwarming to see how greatly the dedicated efforts of a few volunteers has changed the outlook of the local community in Bhopal.
Today, decades after the founder began his selfless efforts, Prerna continues to serve over four thousand meals every day to the patients at Hamidia Hospital. While Mr Saluja is no more, his work is carried forward by Ms Rashmi Bawa and other local volunteers in Bhopal. Impressed with its spirit and work, donations and gifts have been pouring in for Prerna, from Indian Railways, ITC Limited, Rotary Club of Bhopal and Dainik Bhasker. 
Today, Prerna has set new benchmarks of social service with its heart-warming and selfless service to humanity, transcending barriers of caste, creed, colour and religion.
A video showcasing the work of Prerna Sewa Trust can be seen below,
Prerna Sewa Trust can be reached at their registered office and contact number mentioned below –
Rain Basera Building,
Hamidia Hospital Campus,
Bhopal 462 001, Madhya Pradesh, India
Phone: +91 (755) 2549202, 2723997
Free Helpline
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