PM-Inspired Program Changes the Lives of Youth in India
“Compassionate people can relieve a lot of suffering— not only in my country, but in developing countries all around the world— if they are willing to give of themselves,” says Dr. M.R. Rajagopal, M.D., a palliative care physician based in Kerala, India.
Founder and chairman of Pallium India, a palliative care non-governmental organization, Dr. Rajagopal is often referred to as “the father of palliative care in India.” In 2018, he received the prestigious national Padma Shri Award from the government of India for his work in helping cancer patients with pain and end-of-life care. He was also nominated for the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize.
“It was such a great honor to have him speak at the PMI regional conference hosted by PMI Kerala Chapter in April 2019,” says S.R. Jayakishore, vice president of education at PMI Kerala Chapter. “In his keynote address, he requested us to support the education of students who have lost a parent or have a disabled parent for whom they provide palliative care.”
Additionally, there are also those students who are patients themselves and have lost their opportunity for the usual paths to formal education.
Dr. Rajagopal’s call for help was a challenge that PMI Kerala Chapter volunteers were eager and happy to accept. With guidance from
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