Association of Kerala Medical Graduates/AKMG

AKMG-HS: Celebrating Seventeen Years of Philanthropy

AKMG was founded in 1981 as a social and non-profit organization Dr. Gokulanathan was the founding president. The process of establishing the AKMG Humanitarian Services (AKMG-HS) ran through the presidencies of Drs. Shakunthala Rajagopal, Ravindra Nathan and Easwaran Variyam, from 1999 through 2002. I was authorized to establish and register AKMG-HS in Louisiana as a non-profit organization, and have been serving as the Chair of the AKMG-HS. I am very humbled and honored for this opportunity to serve the AKMG.

I congratulate the past AKMG presidents and appreciate them for their wholehearted support for the various past and current charitable causes AKMG-HS has undertaken. Dr. Ravindra Nathan initiated the books and medical journals donation program for the medical colleges in Kerala while Dr. Variyam promoted medical research.  The HS had its best fiscal year when Dr. Narendra Kumar was the president, raising the most money ever for the AKMG-HS in 2003-2004. In collaboration with the local Rotary Club, we sponsored twenty open heart surgeries for the underprivileged in Cochin. Dr. Kumar was instrumental in establishing a $100,000 AKMG Silver Jubilee Endowment Fund.

Soon all the AKMG - Learning Resource Centers (LRCs) in Kerala medical colleges were established. Utilizing the funds from the AKMG Silver Jubilee endowment, we were also able to provide yearly subscriptions for MD Consult and for several years (annual contribution $21,000) for the LRCs of all the Kerala medical colleges. I especially thank the alumni of the various Kerala medical colleges for supporting the LRCs. We should applaud the leadership provided for the setup of the LRCs by Dr. Narendra Kumar and Dr. Krishna Prasad, Trivandrum, Dr. Karunakaran Kutty, Calicut, Dr. George Thomas, Kottayam, and Dr. K.C Joseph, Alleppy and Dr. P. C. Punnen, Trissur.

Many of the AKMG presidents in the past identified AKMG-HS projects as their most important projects of their presidencies. Over the years we have supported North American, Indian and Kerala humanitarian causes. Some beneficiaries of our philanthropy include: Disabled American Veterans, the USO, Wounded Warrior Project, American Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders. St. Jude Children’s Cancer Center, and the Allergy and Asthma Network/ Mothers of Asthmatics.

Additionally, AKMG-HS has accomplished the following:

In 2013, AKMG-HS’s collaboration with AAPI-Charitable Foundation was instrumental in establishing the most recent AAPI Clinic in India, which has given us national recognition. The clinic is located in the suburbs of Kochi, Panangad. Dr. Parakkat Gopalakrishnan, of Mullins, SC donated the seed money, land, and the building for the clinic. The clinic had been in existence for the past 20 years and was a Care and Share project. The AAPI-AKMG-AKMG-HS, Panangad clinic is a full service, seven days a week, outpatient clinic serving the poorest in the community, and providing both primary care and specialty services.

Dr. Enas A. Enas partnered with Dr. Salim Ali of the McMasters University, Canada and AKMG-HS in establishing a Kerala Health Initiative. Through this initiative we are promoting the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of non-communicable diseases such as hypertension, cardiac disease, diabetes, COPD and asthma.

I am grateful to Tony Devassy and Ashley A. Elenjickel of Care and Share, USA and E. R. Menon, President of Care & Share, Kerala Chapter, for joining AKMG-HS in many relief efforts and charitable activities.

I have been privileged to be the (first) and long time Patron Trustee of the AAPI Charitable Foundation, Medical Director of the Care and Share for many years and the Chair of the AKMG-Humanitarian Services since its inception. We have been doing what it could to help the various charitable causes in the USA and abroad.

For the future, I propose that we do planned giving through financial planning, utilizing the Wills and Trusts of the AKMG members. Members should consider establishing Donor–Advised Funds through the AKMG- HS, which is a 501(c)3  IRS Tax Exempt Charity, EIN 320051235.  Such funds would enable us to broaden the scope of our charitable mission. Remember, your contributions to the HS are tax deductible. Since there is no administrative fee involved, 100% of the donations will go to the charity of your choice. To quote Andrew Carnegie, through charitable giving, “you can do real and permanent good.”

We should be proud of the AKMG-HS.

Seventeen Years and Counting… Celebrating Philantrophy!

Prem Menon, MD Chair,
AKMG Humanitarian Services