BPL = Below Poverty Line.
This is more than just a term used in government reports; it describes the lives of millions of human beings too. Many of these are elderly people. In India, over 23 million elderly people fit this description and 10 million more are classified as “destitute.”
These are not lazy individuals. Most of these elderly people need to work simply to survive until the day they die, or until they no longer have the ability to work. Most have been abandoned by families too poor to support them. Most subsist on only on one meal per day, with no one to help them obtain water to drink from village wells or to help them soothe their aches and pains.
Mr. Tulasi and his wife Panjaliammal
Mr. Tulasi and his wife fit these descriptions. They live in a one-room mud-walled house with a thatched roof. When it rains, the earthen floors turn into thick, wet mud. There is no electricity in their house. All they have is an oil lamp, but they rarely have oil to keep it lit during long dark nights. On good days, they are able to eat one small meal, but there are also many days when they have nothing to eat except watery rice porridge.
Mr. Tulasi no longer has the strength or stamina to work outside the home due to a prolonged illness. He tries to help his wife with household chores such as cooking, cleaning and washing because she is currently the sole breadwinner. Each day, she walks a few miles to a field where she works at hard labor while exposed to the brutality of the sun during summer and high humidity during winter. These relentless daily assignments pay only 40 rupees, which is less than a single US dollar a day.
Mr. Tulasi and his wife are grateful for the assistance they receive.
Thanks to our compassionate HoPE Center children for identifying this need, as well as our generous sponsors, Mr Tulasi and 75 other destitute elders receive monthly groceries (including rice, Toor dal, sunflower oil, chili powder, pepper, cumin seeds, mustard, pickle bottle, bath soap, washing soap, shampoo, tooth powder, coconut oil, cough syrup, and pain relieving gel) to help keep them fed, groomed and in less pain. They also receive occasional articles of clothing. More importantly, they know that they are cared for and not completely forsaken by humanity.
With your help, we can work toward the goal of making categories like “BPL” and “destitute” obsolete. For only $30 a month, we can feed, clothe, comfort and restore dignity to poor elderly people like Mr. Tulasi and his wife. Will you help?