Soul-stirring songs complemented by a mesmerizing performance, recounting the tales of Radha and Krishna, marked the silver jubilee celebrations of Sankara Nethralaya Women Auxiliary (SWAN).
Hiren Parpani and his team from Mumbai kept a captivated audience glued to their seats with a scintillating performance of ‘Sathavaro Radhe Shyamno’ (in company of Radha & Krishna) — an amalgamation of songs, music and dance based on Radha and Krishna. Held at the Narada Gana Sabha, Chennai, on October 25, the three-hour programme took the audience on an enchanting journey through Gokul, Mathura and Vrindavan and through the various Krishna leelas. Every act was preceded by a narrative laced with humour and conveying a message.
Earlier on Ms. Vani Jayaraman enthralled the audience with an exceptional and soulful rendition. Welcoming the gathering, Dr. Vasanthi Badrinath praised the efforts of all SWAN volunteers for their remarkable contributions. Describing the various activities carried out by SWAN at Sankara Nethralaya, Ms. Surekha Mehta urged the audience to support SWAN and Sankara Nethralaya in its various initiatives. Ms. Jayaraman and the entire troupe from Mumbai, including Mr. Parpani, were honoured on the occasion.
Registered as a public charitable trust in 1984, SWAN volunteers consist of non-professional housewives and men, who have served Sankara Nethralaya in various capacities.
SWAN volunteers organize conferences, events, maintain the STD booths, utility and coffee shop, dilate patients’ eyes, maintain patient records, serve as translators for non-natives at Sankara Nethralaya, look after the crèche which it set up for consultants’ children and assist the ophthalmic hospital in its day-to-day activities.
SWAN has also helped raise funds for Sankara Nethralaya. They have held cultural programmes and proceeds obtained from the events have benefited thousands of poor patients. SWAN members help Sankara Nethralaya doctors and optometrists at the eye camps that the hospital conducts.
Over the years, with the help of donations received from society at large, they have successfully launched a number of schemes for indigent patients, including the Annapoorni scheme (free food), Spectacles scheme and Dark glasses scheme benefiting over one lakh poor patients.