Day 4 started for Yatris with visiting Aravind Eye Care Hospital in Madurai. Madurai has become India’s eye surgery capital, thanks to superefficient Aravind Eye Care System.
Aravind Eye Care Hospital is an ophthalmological hospital with several locations in India. It was founded by Dr. Govindappa Venkataswamy in 1976. Venkataswamy began running it with just 11 beds, and in 38 years of its existence, it has become the largest eye hospital of the world with eight similar hospital in South India and collaborating with over 300 hospitals across India, Africa, South America and Europe. Aravind’s doctors perform 2000 surgeries a year vs the national average of 400.
Dr Venkataswamy had vision of ending blindness in India. He dreamt of replicating the model that McDonald’s adopts to deliver the same quality burger all over the world with same efficiency. The hospital runs on an inherent culture of catering to the needy with 2/3rd of the patients treated free of cost! It funds itself through the money it generates by treating people who can afford to pay.
The idea which got this hospital running was that resources need not get bigger than the aspirations. A dream can very well be translated in to reality if it is associated with joy of giving. Resources can trouble you but they can’t hold you back. Aspirations should be strong and large enough to keep you motivated as well as grounded.
Aravind Eye Care center never advertise, but their patients carry the banner of their compassion.
There were some lessons which Doctors from Aravind eye care center had to share with Yatris;
“”If you can get through the first 30%, the rest 70% just follows. Be persistent.””
“”Pedal too fast & you’re out of control. Pedal too slow & loose balance. All you need is to maintain the right speed.””
“”The beauty of our life is that we can witness a developed India, from the developing.””
Meanwhile back in the train, Yatris had their own team building excercises, and other sessions.
As Yatra moves another happening day, with learning, Yatris have begun forming bonds with their fellow travelers, getting to know them better, about their personal lives, different conditions and situations back at their homes.Hopefully these bonds will last a lifetime.