Come and visit Thennur village near Trichy, Tamil Nadu. I got a chance to go there when we went to our friend Thilaga’s marriage. Here is a man who was earning Rs 2 lakhs per month 5years ago in the US . One of his ambitions, from the time he was studying in school, is to serve his village. Hence, after earning some money for his parents, he resigned his job in the US and came to his village to start an NGO in order to support the village. He is just 36 years old now which means he resigned his job when he was 31! He is also called as ‘Ilam Gandhi’ (Young Gandhi).
So, what did he do after resigning his job?? He invested Rs 40 lakhs in Thennur to build a community health center and an informal learning center. Out of the Rs 40 lakhs which he spent, Rs 31 lakhs came out of his own pocket. He started an NGO called ‘Payir’ to help this village
Have a look at his PAYIR’s building’s below:
The community health center:
Informal learning center
Now, he has appointed 5 people who are locals and who function as his staff. They teach proper English to the schools available in their locality.
Local staffs working in Payir
And that is not all! He has created a small IT company within that village. This company has 4 employees as of now, who are all graduates from this village. They have a US client and are currently working on a $2500 project. This IT company is in the middle of a Coconut farm.
Have a look at their IT company below:
The IT company in the middle of a farm
While working in the US , he used to deposit a little money for his parents as one of his mother’s wishes was to build a house for themselves. With his savings, his parents now live in a big house at Srirangam.
But, that’s not the case with him. He lives in a small hut in that village itself.
Have a look at his room below:
I asked him, how he is able to live without any earnings? His reply was as follows:
“Payir trust provides me with daily food. My trustees have agreed on this. I have built a hut for myself using my past earnings. So shelter is not a problem. I have 3sets of shirts and Vesti(Dhoti) which I can use for the next 2 years. My friends will get me a few dresses once or twice in a year. What more do I need in my life??”.
Have a look at the slipper of the great man who was earning 2Lakhs a month in US:
When I asked, how he will manage in his old age, if he gets any disease, he coolly replied that he will go to a Govt. hospital where everything is free of cost.
How many of us will dare to act like Senthil ? Many of us have so many dreams in life like becoming a music director, to become a cricketer, to do MBA, go to the Himalayas, help the schools where we studied, to become a district collector etc etc.. But we all lose our dreams just to earn money and want to reach a position which we call it as ‘Status’. We determine our path by seeing what others are doing. We select our needs based on what others have. We select a course to study based on the job availability and its salary rather than our interest for the subject.
Every one forgets that we have only one life to achieve our dream. Many of us chase what we do not want actually. If you still have some of your dreams unfulfilled, remember that you are the reason behind it. Start now and chase your dreams!
Senthil had a dream and he started executing it now! Believe me or not. Senthil started dreaming about Payir organization during his 11th std!
Senthil - The real hero!
Coming to the social aspect of Senthil, how many of us will leave all that we have earned and work for the benefit of others? Have we ever dreamt of doing what Senthil has done?
While returning from Thennur, only one thing was running on my mind. If everyone of us did atleast 0.1% of what Senthil has done, our India will be much better than any other country in this world!!
If many of us continue to focus on personal growth without worrying about our nation, in future, there will be many more Senthil’s around us who would have sacrificed their personal life for the welfare of this country.
Thennur is not just another village in our India map. It is a start of a new beginning for India . Thennur is a proof of the change that youth can bring in our country.