Delhi-based ambulance driver Twinkle Kalia and her husband Himanshu have been helping people in need by providing free ambulance service for two decades.

When Himanshu was merely 16 years of age, his father had a terrible accident and had to be taken to the hospital urgently.

The family did not have enough money to hire an ambulance. They were able to finally take him to a hospital four hours later after arranging enough money for an auto rickshaw.

However, the delay in treatment pushed his father into a coma leaving the family devastated.

It took his father two years to recover. Seeing the plight of his father, Himanshu decided to make a difference in the lives of others.

So, when he got married to Twinkle in 2002, his only wish was to get an ambulance as a wedding present.

Since then, the couple has been working round the clock to ferry patients in need for free under a trust by the name of ‘Shahid Bhagat Singh Help and Care for Society’.

“We perform last rites, cremate bodies abandoned by families, and provide other ambulance services to people who cannot afford them,” says Himanshu.

Over the past two decades, the couple has expanded to a fleet of 14 ambulances and 10 drivers, and they have helped more than 80,000 patients.

The couple juggles selling insurance policies to potential clients and attending emergency calls.

“As our income suffers, it reflects in our personal lives. We receive frequent notices from schools for delayed fee payment for our two daughters,” he says.

The couple faces severe financial and health issues. They have been forced to live on the edge for the past years.

“In 2019, the President of India conferred Twinkle with the Nari Shakti Puraskar, but on the personal front, our children were about to get expelled by the school for not paying the fees on time. Awards do not help us meet our financial needs,” says Himanshu.

However, these odds have never held the couple back. “We need five additional ambulances to save more lives. Some people wish to help but do not know how. We appeal to such people to help us and contribute to our cause,” he says.