In the midst of so much negativity, there will always be stories of hope and inspiration that reinstate our faith in mankind and make us believe that the world still has a lot of good samaritans who are quietly toiling away in the hope of making the world a better place to live in. In a recent article I read, I came across the inspiring story of a doctor who lives and works in one of the most backward regions of the State of Odisha, and today, this is the story that I’d like to share with you.
This good Samaritan named Dr Chittaranjan Jena, is based in Dasmantpur, works with his team of medical practitioners to bring about the much-needed qualitative change in the lives of villagers who suffer from poverty, poor health, sanitation, malnutrition, illiteracy and unemployment.
Over the past two years, Dr Jena and his team of medical practitioners have been providing healthcare, by walking long distances on foot, sometimes covering even 3 to 4 km to reach remote areas, where villagers cannot afford to buy food, let alone head to the towns and cities for medical attention.
Not just that, Dr Jena also set up a committee aptly named, ‘Gaonku Chala Committee,’ (which literally means—’let’s go to the villages’), that has been working closely with the people to spread awareness on health and hygiene, (e’g., such as the usage of mosquito nets and washing hands regularly with soap etc), immunisations, conducting routine health check-ups, distributing free medicines to the needy, and even counselling the villagers on alcoholism and child marriage. Since the initiative has shown some encouraging results, Dr Jena’s team has now taken a pledge, along with the people, to also commit to the cause of the ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’.
Dr Jena and his team make it a point to visit one village every week, out of a total of 12 villages. They do this after their regular work hours at the primary health centre at Dasmantpur, where they spread awareness about the importance of cleanliness and sanitation and emphasise the need for safe drinking water in schools. Recently, the team have adopted yet another initiative, named Swasthya Sahayaka Bahini (SSB), whereby villagers are given the responsibility to report any health issues which arise in their area, to the concerned medical authorities or even government medical officers so that timely and necessary action can be provided and precious lives saved.
Dr Jena’s efforts might seem like a drop in the ocean but as they, every drop counts. Every single life saved can make a difference. Today, the initiatives led by the Gaonku Chala Committee are being slowly recognised and even celebrated by the local media. Dr Jena’s efforts are seen to have created a tremendous impact upon the living conditions for the impoverished tribal communities in the Dasmantpur block. We wish Dr Jena more power to overcome the obstacles and continue the good work that he has been doing for the people.
This post has been written for the We Are the World Blogfest, a monthly event created by Damyanti Biswas and Belinda Witzenhausen to showcase heartwarming stories of hope and light of real-life heroes from around the world, that show love, humanity and brotherhood in a world filled with negativity and hatred otherwise.
The hosts for this month are Inderpreet Uppal, Sylvia Stein, Peter Nena, Belinda Witzenhausen and Shilpa Garg. Don’t forget to check out their WATWB posts and those of other WATWB participants to get inspired and feel a surge of positivity rise within you. It would be wonderful if you join in by sharing stories that you may have come across—particularly those that help spread hope and positivity.
Until next time, let us aim to stay hopeful and remain positive! 🙂