SAMAG is a registered, Non-Profit support group which is relentlessly working for the cause of “Ataxia” and “Muscular Dystrophies”- a set of Neuro Muscular degenerative disorders resulting in body imbalance and heart problems which gradually worsens until the victim becomes totally incapacitated. At present, there is no known cure in this world for this disorder.
SAMAG was founded by Chandu George in 2006 in Hyderabad, India with a vision to spread awareness about Ataxia and to provide information and counseling to families coping with Ataxia. Journey has been difficult for this budding organization but thanks to the positive efforts of volunteers led by Chandu, SAMAG has slowly and steadily created awareness on Ataxia and has successfully paved the way to create a forum for Ataxians thus bringing in hope and voice for Ataxians in India.
Chandu George, belonging to a middle class family in Hyderabad, has grown from being a shy and introvert guy into a confident personality leading the way for better life for Ataxians. Diagnosed with Friedreich’s ataxia from the tender age of 14, Chandu realized very early that living with Ataxia was a part of his life and a reality. Over the years he has accepted this hard bitter truth in life and maintaining an ever optimistic attitude, he has strived relentlessly in building SAMAG, an effort to better the lives of families coping with this rare condition.
Completing 4 years of operation, SAMAG has been successful in getting attention from local organizations and volunteers who have come forward to help in its efforts by tree plantations, donation of wheelchairs, organizing fundraising activities etc. SAMAG has also been featured in local channels like Saakshi TV and TV9 along with getting published in local newspapers. It continues to act as an advocacy and lobby group for Ataxians and continues to prepare volunteers who can contribute their time and energy for the welfare of Ataxia patients and help them in obtaining essential commodities like wheelchairs, walkers, medicine etc.
However, despite all its achievements, SAMAG is still in need of funds as well as volunteers to realize many of the pending projects. One such project is SAMAG Rehabilitation Center. SAMAG aspires to build a disabled friendly rehabilitation centre where it can bring the Ataxian families together along with care givers and volunteers. Chandu truly believes that spending a weeks time in a direct interactive environment , Ataxian families can share their concerns, reduce their worries and also develop a feeling of ” togetherness” which can bring them new hope in life.
This project is yet to be realized due to the lack of funds and resources.
Another project is to open a branch of SAMAG in Bangalore which is again not been realized because of lack of volunteers and like-minded people.
I take this opportunity to remind The Better India readers that SAMAG is a registered non-profit support group which entirely depends upon donation, charity, grants and fund raising events. It needs helping hands to support the cause and funds to implement projects. Even a little help can make a huge difference.
So, please feel free to contact Chandu at sam_ataxiaindia[at]yahoo[dot]com in order to find out ways of help, how to become a volunteer, how to conduct fund-raising activities, sponsor a victim or make a donation.
Please visit www.samataxiagroup.org to know more.
Read more about Ataxis here: Ataxia on Wikipedia
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