Inspired by Group Captain Leonard Cheshire, a small gathering of eminent Bangaloreans were discussing setting up a “Cheshire Home” in the city. Read more...
Ms. Veronica Das, wife of India's first test pilot of the Indian Air Force and H.A.L., Group Captain Suranjan Das, joined the committee in 1963 and went on to serve as its Honorary Secretary until 2003. In 1997 she was conferred the title of 'Member of the British Empire', for her dedication to charitable work in India.
At the suggestion of the Central Trust based at Kolkata, the name of the Bangalore Cheshire Home was changed to Cheshire Homes India, Bangalore Unit.
Dr. Yusuf Sait, a Canadian resident of Indian origin, donated Rs. 2,84,000 to the Home in memory of his wife Penny. The money was used to build a much needed medical room with a bathroom, which was also inaugurated simultaneously with the Suranjan Das Block.
The committee was able to consider the construction of a new building to accommodate the activities related to occupational therapy, skills training, and entertainment of the residents.
Mr J H Macguckin who owned a house in Whitefield expressed his desire and made a Will to the effect that this property would be left to the Bangalore Cheshire Home and possession could be taken after the death of his daughter. After his death in 1978, his daughter handed over the Home in 1979.
With a donation from the Rotary Club of Indiranagar, this property was developed in to a Home for Elderly Women.
A generous donation of Rs.21,00,000 that came from a British Planter, Mr. G. Graham, made it possible to raise the salaries of staff to bring them on part with the prevailing Government scales.
A choir was started under the tutelage of Ms. Pillai and this tradition took a deep root and to this day, the Choir is invited to sing at festivals and special occasions.
Cheshire Homes became a separate entity and registered itself in Bangalore with the Registrar of Societies.This is our story from 1961 till date, carrying the legacy of our founder, constantly working to improve the life of persons with disabilities.
Dr. and Ms. Zal R Kothavala who lived on their estate known as Rustam Bagh on the former HAL Road, presently Old Airport Road, generously gifted an acre of land to set up the Bangalore Cheshire Home. A formal ‘Committee of Bangalore Cheshire Home’ was established.
Since the residential facilities could not be established immediately on the piece of land donated by the Kothavala family, they once again offered a cottage in their own home, ‘Dil Bahar’, on the Rustam Bagh Estate as temporary accommodation on a notional rent of Rs.50 per month.
The original members were:
Bangalore Cheshire Home started functioning with its first solitary resident, a severely arthritic and bedridden young girl named Ivy Paul.
In addition to the contributions of the Dairy Patron of India Dr. Zal Kothavala and his philanthropist and social worker wife Gulbanu Z. Kothavala, Cheshire Home also had the support of the Governors and Ministers of the erstwhile Government of Mysore, Nobel Laureate Sir C.V. Raman and Lady Raman, Major General Bhatia and his wife, Dr. Bhatia.
M/s. Basco's of Brigade Road gave the Home a monthly meal from inception until 1973.