Sri Sivathanu Charitable Trust
Mission of the Trust
Sri Sivathanu Charitable Trust (Regd.), Chennai, India, believes in direct charity to poor people irrespective of religion, caste, or creed. Unlike an orphanage or an old-age home which would be resource-limited to provide complete care to a fortunate set of a few people, this Trust attempts to reach a broad set of poor persons. Our current activities include the following:
On every Saturday morning, the Trust gives cash of Rs.50 each towards food, plus one biscuit packet to every poor person who comes to the address of the Trust. The number of poor persons who get benefited each Saturday keeps increasing week by week.
Until 2012 Diwali, on the Saturday before each Diwali, we distributed free clothes worth approximately Rs.200/- to 250/- to every poor person who came to the address of the Trust.
From November 2011, we are giving cash of Rs. 70 each towards food (increased from Rs. 50) for the physically handicapped and persons having pathetic diseases.
From August 26, 2017 (Vinayakar Chaturthi), we are giving cash of Rs. 100 towards food (increased from Rs. 70) for seriously handicapped persons (such as blind persons)
We do not define who qualifies as poor -- the only qualification is that the person should be willing to stand in queue at the specified time and ask for the charity. We believe that a person asking for charity of such a relatively small amount sacrifices a lot in terms of his/her self-esteem and ego, and that itself qualifies him/her to be a poor person.
Our policy: No third-party donations
We have a strict policy not to accept any donations from any third-party. The entire funds for the charity of the Trust comes from the founder of the trust. The most common mode of charity these days among the generous-minded is to pick an existing charitable organization and donate money to it, but it is a well-known and unfortunate fact that many such organizations in India misuse funds, often running the charity institution as a business. Instead, we would like to encourage persons with a charitable intent to engage in direct charity to the poor in their own ways to their best abilities in such a way that the end use of their charity is direct and very obvious to them; the fulfillment and satisfaction one gets from such a charity is immense and creates a virtuous cycle.
Words of great saints
"This is the gist of all worship — to be pure and to do good to others. He who sees Shiva in the poor, in the weak,
and in the diseased, really worships Shiva; and if he sees Shiva only in the image, his worship is but preliminary.
He who has served and helped one poor man seeing Shiva in him, without thinking of his caste, or creed, or
race, or anything, with him Shiva is more pleased than with the man who sees Him only in temples."
- Swami Vivekananda
The videos page on this site has videos on our Saturday charity and we update it every week with the latest videos. From 31/3/12, these videos contain devotional and philosophical songs in the background. Simply viewing these videos would make one realize how disadvantaged many poor people are and we hope that this will help create a desire among the good-minded people to start their own charity activities to help such people. Seeing the faces of the poor people after receiving the charity, one can realize the kind of difference even simple charity could make in the lives of such poor people, and fostering this feeling is the goal behind our disseminating these videos and that is the purpose of this website.
Videos for latest week (March 4, 2023) (for full set of videos, look at Videos page)
(click on the images to play the videos)
The founder of the Trust has been doing charity on Saturdays since 2005. The amount given per person has gradually increased over time, and was Rs. 10 per person plus food until June 2010, and the number of persons who came to the house of the founder on Saturdays was pretty small until that time. In July 2010, the charity per head was increased to Rs. 50 plus food, and that triggered a significant increase in the number of people asking for charity on Saturdays. Also, from 2008 to 2012, on every Diwali, free clothes were distributed to all the poor persons who came to the house asking for it on the preceding Saturday.
In May 2011, the founder instituted Sri Sivathanu Charitable Trust to formalize these charity activities and to ensure that this practice is followed for a long time even after his life time, and the trust started functioning from 25th June 2011. Our desire is to give charity to every person visiting us on Saturday mornings, and so far we have been able to fulfill this desire despite the significant growth in the number of persons.
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