Jamshedpur, July 1: Since July 4, 1987, the free Saturday clinic at Loyola School has held 1,040 sessions, not missing a single Saturday, be it Holi or Diwali.
A cherished effort of the committed Loyola Alumni Association, the clinic has been serving the underprivileged for 20 years now. As it completes two decades this month, the association plans to undertake more activities, beginning this week. Ever since the inception of the free clinic, it has been drawing over 150-200 patients every Saturday, which are attended by six to seven doctors.
“The alumni association has gained strength from this clinic and it has been our sole motive to render selfless service through this clinic,” said Sharad Singh, secretary of Loyola Alumni Association.
“On its completion of 20 years, we have now planned to extend our services to the students and teachers of the Loyola Project School, which draws students from the underprivileged section,” Singh added.
The alumni association has decided to mark the occasion not with celebrations but with more philanthropic activities. Beginning from July 3 to 5, a series of baseline health check-ups will be held for the 735-odd students of the afternoon school.
“The eyesight check has already been conducted last weekend. Alarmingly, around 54 students had sight defects. Though at the moment we are conducting only the basic tests, we are now also planning to help the children by making glasses available for them,” Singh told The Telegraph.
“The other check-ups for basic health, cardio-respiratory, ENT and lungs are slated for the three-day programme this week. Sessions on personal hygiene and healthy food habits would be held on July 3,” he said, adding that free medicines would be distributed to the children and for that, the civil surgeon had been contacted.
“We will have a panel of technicians to support the three doctors, who have volunteered to conduct the sessions for us. We are really happy that the clinic has drawn immense support not only from the alumnus but also from philanthropists across the country,” he added.
The school health initiative could also become an annual affair for the association, said Pratim Banerjee, former secretary of the alumni association.