WHO WE ARE
Access Life Assistance Foundation, an Indian not-for-profit organisation registered as a section 8 company provides multi-disciplinary supportive care to families who come to Mumbai for their child’s cancer treatment.
It provides a loving and temporary home for children undergoing treatment for cancer along with their parents or caretakers.
Access Life set up its first centre in June 2014 in Chembur and has grown to 5 childhood cancer care centres across Mumbai and Thane. Through our 5 centres we have offered a holistic support to more than 150 underprivileged children with cancer, and their families.
Families come from remote towns and cities across India seeking treatment for their children affected with cancer. While hospitals extend them quality medical services, the poorer families have no place to stay during the 5-12 months (sometimes extending to 24 months) that it takes to complete the treatment. Many end up living on footpaths or are forced to abandon treatment.
Along with a home-like environment for these families, we also address the psychological and social effects of cancer by providing practical support services, nutritional support, educational resources, safe transport to hospitals, and recreational programs.
Our philosophy stems from our core value, that high quality and holistic healthcare facilities should be available for all, regardless of their economic status.
To create an environment where children have access to quality health care and holistic support and which allows families to face the weight of illness together.
To provide all the children from the age 0-14 years coming to Mumbai for treatment of cancer, a clean, safe, comfortable, caring and cost-free accommodation, wherein their families are able to better comfort and support them, while actively participating in their care.
When we started Access Life, three years ago, we envisioned that every needy child who comes to Mumbai to undergo treatment for cancer, would have an access to a clean, safe, comfortable, caring, and cost-free accommodation - a home away from home for both the child and his family. In such a nurturing environment, these little ones would have another shot at life.
As a first step, we developed such a model at one location, the successful framework from which could then be replicated elsewhere. Thus, we set up the first Access Life Centre for Childhood Cancer Care at Chembur, in Mumbai, Maharashtra, in June 2014. The donation of a mini-van by a generous contributor ensured stress-free transport to and from hospital for the children.
Along with meeting their physical needs, we also addressed the psychological and social effects of cancer. Counselling, yoga, music, recreational, educational and nutritional supplementation programmes, helped give the parents and the children, the holistic support that they need to tackle the disease challenge.
In 2014, we started our first center in Mumbai, India with a mission to minimize some of the challenges faced by these kids and their families. This center is equipped to support 8 kids and their families at a time. In 2016, we started our second and third centres in Thane & Andheri, Mumbai, India equipped to support additional 12 & 3 kids and their families respectively. In 2017, we started our fourth centre in Chembur, which supports 11 such kids and their families, and in 2018 started our fifth centre in Chembur, which supports 9 more families thus taking our basic capacity to 43 accommodation units that serve the needs of over 120 children and their family members. Our five Centres are operating full capacity and plans are afoot to open a sixth Centre in the coming year!
And so our Mission continues…….
– GIRISH NAIR
Founder & Chairman
Girish comes with over 15 years of rich experience in Finance Management and has worked in various industries like Aviation, Public Relations and Travel. He has been associated with several organizations, including Ethiopian Airlines, Malaysian Airlines, Neucom Consulting (PR Firm), SGS Enterprises & Nexus Travel Solutions. Currently he is a partner with SGS Enterprises & is also on the board of Directors of Nexus Travel Solutions Pvt. Ltd. He was awarded the Asia-Pacific Cancer Society's Training Grant (APCASOT) for a training programme in Australia in 2016.
Ankeet has over a decade of experience in Public Relations and Communication management. He has worked for renowned PR Agencies, like Hanmer MS&L & Vaishnavi Communications and has serviced clients in the media & entertainment space as well as managed PR for celebrities. Currently he is Managing Partner, Commarchs Digital Media Llp, a limited liability partnership firm.
Preethi holds a Master's Degree in Social Work and comes with seven years of professional experience with organizations like the Family Planning Association of India, The Institute of Applied Dermatology and the Freedom Foundation. Her commitment towards the causes she has been working for namely, education of masses on HIV/Aids reflects in the remarkable role she has essayed in all her assignments.
Dr Suresh Sundar
Director, Advisory Board
Suresh is a Mumbai University topper in both, his Diploma in Public Health and his MD, Community Medicine Degree. He has trained in Primary Health Care, Rural Management and Human Resources Development at international organizations. Suresh has over three decades of teaching, public health and consultancy experience with USAID, UNICEF, Aga Khan Development Network, as well as medical colleges and national and International NGOs. Suresh is also the parent of a Hodgkins Lymphoma and Bone Marrow Transplant survivor.