Anuradha’s dream was to become a doctor. In 2005, her dream became real when she obtained a place at Dr. Sampurnanada Medical College in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. She takes pride in the fact that she is the first graduate of SKSN to enter medicine.
Though not challenged academically, she is physically. Anuradha has polio in her right leg.
When we first met her in November 2005, she was only 19 years old but her gait had already deteriorated to a point that she was barely able to walk from one class to another without running out of breath. At the time, her only source of financial support was an annual scholarship of Rs 2,500 ($56) a month. Her father worked in a tea canteen and earned less than Rs 30,000 ($667) a year – barely enough to buy food for his family of 8 let alone send his daughter to a medical school. “That’s my kismet (luck)”, she said in her quiet non-complaining manner. But behind that unassuming façade was a resolute young woman. She was determined to obtain her medical degree and dreamt of becoming a neurosurgeon so that she could “help the less fortunate segment of the society”. More importantly, the future of her 3 younger sisters (one of whom also has polio) was riding on her success. She was, and continues to be, a beacon of inspiration to the children, especially to the more than 100 girls who reside at SKSN.
Meeting this remarkable young woman, we knew that she would become a doctor now that she had obtained a place in medicine. That was natural. She would be under significant mental stress for that’s what medical studies entailed. A medical career would definitely bring out the best in her given her personality and determination to succeed. But how painlessly she would attain her degree would depend upon the support we would offer.
Since 2005, Polio Children has been providing Anuradha with a medical scholarship worth $2570 per annum. Additionally, a scooter worth $1620 was purchased for her so that she could travel from her hostel to the various hospitals and clinics. She completed her medical studies in July 2010 and plans to pursue a career in general medicine. Anuradha’s accomplishment has not gone unnoticed elsewhere in the country. In 2007, she was chosen as UNICEF’s poster child for advocating education for girls in India.
We are pleased to report that Anuradha qualified as a medical doctor (MBBS) in April 2010 with a first class degree