A former nurse who sold all her worldly goods to help look after the poor, sick and disabled in southern India will give a talk in Leeds next week.
Sylvia Wright will discuss major developments in India and recent changes in her own work there during a coffee morning at Sandmoor Golf Club on Alwoodley Lane on Monday.
In 1982, Sylvia gave up her home, friends and her senior lecturer post in Leeds to devote her life to those less fortunate than herself.
Now, 35 years later and at the age of 79, she runs a residential school for 210 profoundly deaf children and a nursing college training 60 students to the high standards she learned at Leeds General Infirmary. She is planning to expand the college to train 120 nurses.
Until recently she was the founder and director of a 200 bed charity hospital in Tiruvannamalai which has been transferred to a trust of Indian doctors.
She is now able to refocus her efforts to an area of great need and is opening a purpose-built integrated education and therapy centre for up to 100 severely disabled children.
Sylvia said: “The children come from very deprived backgrounds and have no other opportunity to develop and learn. Their disabilities are distressing and confining.”
No charge is made to the families of the children. Sylvia’s inspiring vision has changed the lives of thousands of sick and disabled people in the very poor southern state of Tamil Nadu. She was awarded the OBE in 2008. The July 17 coffee morning runs from 10.30am to 12.30pm. The talk is at noon. During her visit, Sylvia will also be visiting schools, community groups and churches to thank them for their support.