“It’s OK, brother” I gently hugged the palms of his hands with those of mine. With the hand gloves, it was difficult to guess the actual feelings. But, I could see that Rick was gazing at me with the teary eyes of regrets. He wanted to express his gratitude, by all sincere means and said “A big Sorry again; but, I promise that I will never repeat such an act, in my life.” I forgave him despite of his thievery of valuables from the Arcadia Children Foundation. Actually, I decided to forgive him not because of the fact that I sponsored his bad deeds, but because Rick was genuinely helpless due to the coincidental co-occurence of unexpected natural calamity of pandemics, temporary jobless status despite of his dance talents and his son’s unfortunate serious head injury.
From the police station, Rick rushed to see his son Ron, as soon as I arranged his bail. Ron’s emergency brain surgery was miraculously successful, even though, the doctors declared that the chance of success was 10%. Ron is now, “Out of danger.” After seeing his son, Rick would come to my Foundation Center and would join as a dance coach for the children. I have offered him the position, after thoroughly analyzing the whole situation and after getting fully convinced that Rick was not with a criminal mentality, but was a victim of a critical situation, not created by him.
The lockdown and the subsequent recession snatched away Rick’s job at the CrimsonWhite Tours & Resorts, as the Events lead Dancer. He is with decent education, with a clean record and is a perfect gentleman. He never wanted nor needed to do thievery. But, his son Ron had a serious accidental fall, needing emergency multiple-surgery, requiring $15,000, immediately. There was no need-based arrangement, even after so much efforts. Without thinking anything, he took away all my medals, trophies and gold ornaments, as the doors of my Foundation are always open, without a security guard. I have got back the medals, trophies and gold ornaments, kept on mortgage by Rick.
This is Karan, the Managing Worker of Arcadia Children Foundation, a house for providing supports and shelter to the destitute children as well as for their causes. People call me Dr. Karan, because I did my MD in Pediatrics. As per the wishes of my mom, dad, grandfather and uncles, who were professionally qualified doctors, I had to complete my costly medical education, as a family compulsion, to retain our long family tradition. I successfully completed both my MBBS and MD with good scores and got a decent job as a Pediatrician at the most prestigious Medical Center of the City. I liked serving the ailing children and kids, but my mind really wanted to do something more for the children, irrespective of the man-made boundaries. So, I decided to break the long family tradition. “You are a great Pediatrician, Karan. See, in our family, we all are doctors. We have good fame and money, as Doctors. Maintain the tradition, my child. There are so many other people, who can do other social service, as described by you.” My dad tried to convince me, after hearing my decision to quit my formal Job of Pediatrician. “Dad. I did whatever you all wished me to do. I completed my Medical study and joined the job, as a Doctor. Now, I need to do something more, as per my life’s aspirations. Please do not stop me. I am sorry, Dad.”
I submitted my resignation from a very prestigious job. “You are a successful and popular Pediatrician, Karan. If you have any concern for which you are planning to quit, we are ready to discuss and resolve. We really need you, at our Center.” Doctor Ram Krishna, the Director of the Medical Center tried to convince me, too. It was really too difficult and a tough decision to quit; but I quit, without looking back. I was ready to work for my dream of brining smiles on the faces of millions of children through my NGO. As a result, Arcadia Children Foundation took birth, on the day of submission of my resignation.
In this world, everyone is too busy in various activities; but, there are a few, who would actually work as per what their own hearts say. But, it’s really difficult to go against the flow; it surely needs tremendous energy, to break a long tradition. But, once we cross the horizon, the sky becomes limitless.
I could have continued as a popular doctor, with high salary, travelling in luxurious cars and sleeping in super soft mattresses, keeping my long family tradition intact. But, in that case, I would definitely loss the joy of working in a team of like-minded action driven mates, discovering and cuddling thousands of destitute children; seeing them growing self-reliant; making them smile with open hearts, feeling the warmth of genuine hugs and nurturing them for a strong foundation, for a future World, full of peace and honesty.
Millions of children are deprived of the basic rights of education and health. Majority of them are highly talented and with lots of potentials and are ready to study and gain as much knowledge and worth as possible and required. I feel proud that, I could break my long family tradition for a bigger cause. I can see and foresee that a big team of humane human is in the making, because of the initiatives, like that of Arcadia Children Foundation.
“Thank you so much, Sir. I am grateful to you and will remain grateful. It’s my pleasure to accept your offer as a choreographer for the children, at your Center. I will come back, after seeing my son and will join Arcadia”. On hearing the voice of Rick, I took my immediate grip on the thread of my thoughts and nodded my head and hands.
“OK, see you soon, Rick, in our Team”. I gave a big thumbs-up and waived my hands, as he went away.