Father of 600 Orphans
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Sarvodayam Kurian had a Chemist Shop at Narakkal in the middle of the Vypin Island since 1950’s. He inherited it from his uncle late E. A. Kurian. Sarvodayam associated with healthcare as he cared much about the well being of people. Prior to that, during World War II, Kurian served with Red Cross in Nagaland and Trincomalee (then Ceylon, now Sri Lanka). Kurian, though father of five (3 boys and 2 girls) children, always cherished an affection towards children which was directed toward the less fortunate and abandoned ones.
Once when Kurian was in Fort Cochin for some reason, he saw a crowd in front of the General Hospital. On enquiry he found an unclaimed infant left on the hospital steps. Kurian gathered up the crying baby and crossed the ferry from Fort Cochin to Vypin and carried it on his bicycle and headed to Narakkal Government Hospital, where he had built three 15-bed wards (Maternity, TB & Pediatric, and Children). He requested the nurse in-charge to take care of the baby until he returned.
Kurian went and put an advertisement in the newspaper stating that a baby was available for adoption. In three days someone from Changanacherry arrived at Narkkal requesting the baby boy since they had three girls already. Several others also requested for the baby boy. However, Kurian decided to give the baby to the family from Changanacherry. Since then, Kurian never looked back. The number of foundlings steadily increased from one to 600 plus before he died at the age of 79. Most of them are well placed and many used to visit him, when he was alive.
The criteria of selecting the parents for the orphans was based on the need of the family, a quick evaluation and on the spot decision. No financial commitments were involved, and Kurian never failed or regretted decisions.
Very sporty person, who can easily cycle 10 to 15 kms by holding a baby in hand. This journey can start from home to 7.5 kms back and forth. The cycling route is very familiar with known people. He would always wish people if a baby is not in hand. People were used to see him with a bright smile.
Sarvodayam Kurian a one man army supported by lay men from the area, always maintained a list of aspirant parents who looked out for baby to achieve their goal in life He never entertained considerations of caste or creed.
Sarvodayam Kurian’s area of operation towards orphans were initially confined within Ernakulam district.which then went and spread beyond. Even the media, especially news papers and magazines, did not grudge their whole hearted support of Kurian’s selfless service for humanity.