I often read stories where people talk about a particular moment that changed their life. These stories always make me smile. I always used to think that if it is not life or death, how can a moment change your life? Then I met Ravi Kalra and yes, that moment changed my life.

I was in India over the summer spending time with my family when my father suggested that for our birthday this year (my son and I share a birthday), we should go volunteer and feed the folks at The Earth Saviours Foundation. It sounded like a great idea and a good lesson for my son on giving. Little did I know that it would affect me so much.

Located on leased land in the midst of million dollar mansions, the tiny place housed over 250 people. Mr. Kalra told he that since 2008 he has been rescuing people who no one wants. The ones that society has forgotten about. The ones that lie on the street and are ignored. My son held my hand tight as we walked around to see people in wheelchairs, in broken beds but in an environment as clean as he could make it. Several young women and men were volunteering and that is when I noticed the small classroom. “Here is where I take the kids who beg on the street and teach them to read and write so they can go to a proper school. You and your son will be feeding them today.”

Before I could say anything, the little kids gathered around me and sang happy birthday – IN ENGLISH – and both my son and I cried. They then went back to their seats and said a prayer for us and then sat and waited patiently for the food.

Perhaps the only meal they would eat that day. Not one kid fussed, not one broke the line, not one asked for excess. I was stunned to see how well-behaved they were.

I spoke with Mr. Kalra after the lunch and he pointed to a man sitting in a chair. “I found him a year ago. He used to a be judge. Trained in Oxford. Speaks impeccable English. Circumstances made him homeless. And see her, that lovely lady there, her kids left her here at my doorstep.”

(picture of Mr. Kalra rescuing an old woman)

The foundation houses people and feeds them everyday relying on the help of people like you and me to give them donations. He has never taken any money from the government. The conditions are bad. I asked him how he manages and he smiled and said, “Once you take a decision to do something like this, there are no obstacles. Only things that need to be done. I gave up a job with great benefits to do this and if I can help these people, I consider myself a success.”

A van stops by and brings more. As he helps them in, he tells me of one other service he performs. He is the one the cops call when they find bodies on the road that no one claims. He cremates the dead that no one cares about. Since he started doing this, he has cremated over 2000 bodies. He says he wants them to find peace.

That was in August. We went a few times to help. As much I would feel bad about not being able to do enough, it was amazing to see Mr. Kalra and his smile and his do or die spirit.

Yesterday, October 1st, I saw on TV that Mr. Kalra lost the lease on the land where the people were housed. They are now on the streets and need a place to stay. I am trying to help the only way I know how.. by writing and spreading the word. If we dont help, who will? And I always used to think that one person cannot make a difference. After meeting him, I realize what one person can do. I am the one person here writing about this and praying it will make a difference.

Please help if you can. Tell people… Share.. pray… whatever you can do. One at a time, we will make a difference.

To contact Mr. Kalra – For any help or donations, contact Ravi on  9818171695, 9871675485 or svearth@yahoo.com.

And here is just one of the many news stories on them that broke yesterday –Around 100 mentally challenged, elderly people dumped on Delhi streets

update: From the latest news story, I see that they have been given a temporary place to stay. Thank God.

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  1. What a beautiful way to spend your birthday and a great lesson for your sons. I share in your passion and frustration over what has happened. Thanks for posting this story. Will do my best to share so others can help. You never fail to inspire and make a difference in our lives — and you just did that again today, Monica. Hugs 🙂

  2. Thank you for sharing, Monica.

  3. Good work
    Keep it up

  4. I believe that one person can make a huge difference. Reading your story about Mr. Kaira made me smile and tear up at the same time. I am keeping my fingers crossed that he finds a suitable place very soon!
    Thanks for sharing this!

  5. Mr Kalra has done what many wish to but dont… being able to do this… after leaving a perfect job n lifestyle is absolutely commendable…. God Bless Mr Kalra, n bless him the space he requires for setting up an organisation like this..

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