THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Availability of proper emergency medical services is the need of the hour, especially after the Covid pandemic wreaked havoc on the world. The lack of a scientific medical transportation is still a major issue in many parts of the state. Ishika Binu, a Malayali based in Seattle, Washington, is doing her bit to provide ambulance services to Kallara, a rural panchayat in Thiruvananthapuram.
She is being supported by the Girl Scouts of Western Washington for her mission to make medical care accessible for all.The ambulance service was flagged off by MLA D K Murali recently and has already been made available to people.
“We are extremely thankful to Ishika and the Girls Scout of Western Washington for their support. The ambulance service is very important for us. We faced a shortage of medical resources during the pandemic,” said Kallara Panchayat president G J Lissy and vice-president Najinsha S. The service was launched through Ishika’s Girl scout project, Safe Drive Club, which creates awareness on safe driving. In 2018, when she was just 13 years old, Ishika was in a near-fatal car accident.
Her younger sister was with her in the vehicle. “The ambulance that brought us to the hospital proved critical to saving our lives. After the accident, I realised the importance of timely medical intervention. That is how I started the Safe Drive Club,” says the Class 11 student at Interlake High School, Bellevue in Washington.
Ishika conducted various activities as part of the club with the support of the Girls Scout of Western Washington and the Washington state traffic commission. “I realised that other than spreading awareness on the prevention of road accidents, I should also find a way to provide emergency medical services. So I identified places that lacked proper medical transportation services. I found that Kallara panchayat, my father’s hometown, was looking to improve its medical infrastructure. I immediately responded and raised funds for the ambulance service with the help of volunteers. We also conducted art shows and performances in Washington,” shares Ishika.
Before the club, Ishika started an NGO, Arts4Assistance that supports families who have been in car accidents. The Safe Drive Club has also been conducting various activities to propagate road safety. Ishika says she wants to continue with the activities of the safe drive club and expand the ambulance services to more countries. “Currently, I am working on creating ambulance services in Africa,” she says.