Sabeer Thirumala is a renowned author who has written books on various subjects. He is also a social activist who was an active member in Missionaries of Charity, a charity organisation established by Mother Teresa.
He is also a founding member and chairman of Sindhuram Charitable Trust whose purpose is to uplift the poor in the society and bring them into the mainstream of life.
Excerpts of the interview with him
Where did you do your education?
I studied at a school in Mundakayam. Then I studied Political Science through distance education.
When did you start writing?
I used to write short stores when I was 16 years old.
Who encouraged you to write?
No one encouraged me. My father was a businessman and I was also in the trade since I was 16. Somehow writing came to me naturally. No special effort was needed to write.
What kind of writing do you do?
I write biographies, novels and criticism of people. Underlying factor is that there should be a principle.
How did you become a social activist?
I used to travel a lot. When I saw people without a house, children without education - it used to sadden me. I joined Missionaries of Charity and was an active member there for seven years. But the Missionary is, more or less, controlled by sisters. Men don't have a big role. So with 14 others I started Sindhuram Charitable Trust.
What are the goals of this trust?
To provide homes for the homeless, visiting the sick at their houses, help daughters from poor families get married, arranging medical camps in colonies, increasing reading habits by donating books to libraries, organising vacation camps for children, helping to maintain religious harmony and preserving unity among every one, recommending shelter for orphans, supporting old parents who have no one to look after them, providing widow pension and growing trees are our aims as a charitable trust.
How do you going about doing charitable work?
We usually get information on who needs help from news papers. Recently many houses were damaged during the rain. We provided funds to the owner. As another instance, an 85 year woman was being eaten alive by ants. We saw it in the newspaper and went to her rescue. We found her mired in a toilet. We took her to hospital and brought her back to society.
How do you finance these projects?
I do interior designing. This money is used for charitable works.
What motivates you to do charity?
None of us are immortals. If we are able to help someone, if you do good for even one day, the happiness you get, the satisfaction you receive, is something I cannot describe