Snigdha Tiruvuru, a third year English Literature student at the University of Southampton, has chosen a different way to celebrate her 21st birthday this April. Here, Lifestyle Editor Laura Cox catches up with Snigdha, who explains how the money she raises will benefit others.
Which charity have you chosen to support?
I have chosen to help a charity called ‘Manavata’, which means humanity or humankind, and its aim is to create a ‘Healthy, Happy and Harmonious world.’ It is a charity registered in India, the UK and the USA which focuses on alleviating multiple societal ills, such as climate change and poverty. It focuses on Tree Plantations, Natural Farming methods, Humanitarian Aid for those in need and also homes and educates orphaned children. Moreover, Manavata also focuses on personal development and health by organising healthy-living and employment training workshops around the world.
When did you decide to raise funds in this way?
I have wanted to donate my hair for a while, especially after seeing and experiencing the devastating impact of cancer. Also, I wanted to give up something that mattered to me and would make a real difference. I have chosen to donate my hair to the Little Princess Trust as they make wigs for children who have lost hair through their battle with cancer. I’ve chosen to do this on my 21st birthday because I think that this is what would make my birthday most special – giving back to other people.
How will this help others?
The main reason was losing people close to me to cancer and seeing them without hair and the low self-esteem that this entailed. If giving up my vanity would mean that the people who have gone through immense pain have a reason to smile, it would be an honour to give up my hair. The wigs actually cost £350 to make, but they are given to patients by the Little Princess Trust free of charge.
About the charities
The Little Princess Trust was set up in 2006 and aims to help provide the highest quality wigs possible to young cancer patients.
Manavata means Humanity in Sanskrit – the human virtue of tending and befriending others through love, kindness and social intelligence. It is from this very spirit that ‘Manavata’, a voluntary, not-for-profit, humanitarian organization was created over twenty years ago. Since its foundation in 1991, it has welcomed over 8000 volunteers, with new volunteers joining all the time, and new projects taking place every year.
If you’d like to read more about Snigdha Tiruvuru and her story, visit https://www.justgiving.com/snigdhatiruvuru for more information and to support the charities.