Friends Educational and Charitable Trust (FECT)
Friends Educational and Charitable Trust (FECT) (Photo | Express)

Trust FECT to give wings to a hundred dreams

At the initial stage, students used to come across FECT through different people or word of mouth as that was a time when people did not have proper access to internet facilities.

CHENNAI: Dreams do come true when you have the endurance to pursue them. G Rajkumar was the crème de la creme among thousands of medical students, who scored a perfect 200/200 cut off in his medical exam in 2014. Son of a farm labourer in Virudhunagar, Rajkumar received thousands of promises from people when he ensured a medical seat at the prestigious Madras Medical College. But soon his journey came to a halt when they turned their back towards Rajkumar leaving him alone to find a way out to pay his college fee. Finally, he found light at the end of the tunnel when he came across a group of Samaritans over the internet who could sponsor his education through Friends Educational and Charitable Trust (FECT).

Rajkumar, who is currently pursuing his MD in paediatrics from government medical college, Vellore, says, “I contacted Dinesh anna, the founding members of the Trust and he happily agreed to help me. He along with his friends took care of my entire MBBS course fees and hostel fees. It is because of their grace and support that I am standing on this pedestal.”

Rajkumar is not the lone beneficiary of the Trust but FECT has sponsored the education of over 1,000 underprivileged students by fulfilling their dreams. Who would have thought that a fund that was a result of a mere gathering of three college friends in a summer evening would come such a long way? Dinesh Chandrasekaran always wanted to contribute to the society in some or the other way. As they say, little drops of water make a mighty ocean. Likewise, in 2006, FECT was started by three engineering students—Dinesh, Praveen and Senthil—with a meagre capital of Rs 600, each of them contributing Rs 200.

“With the little amount, we bought the educational items and provisions for a mentally challenged child. That was our first social work and it gave us immense happiness. Soon, we started contributing from our salaries and also involved our friends for this noble work. We strongly believe that education is the only panacea for poverty,” said 43-year-old Dinesh.

FECT was started by three engineering students with just Rs 600 | Express
FECT was started by three engineering students with just Rs 600 | Express

At the initial stage, students used to come across FECT through different people or word of mouth as that was a time when people did not have proper access to internet facilities. But in 2008, the trust formed their own website to enhance their reach. A funding trust which used to receive a collection of Rs 9,000 annually in its initial days of providing service, now manages to collect Rs 50 lakh annually.

“All the funds come from our friends, majority of whom work in the IT sector. We do not receive any corporate funding. We have 500 friends in our group who contribute on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis. That is the sole purpose of registering the name of our Trust as Friends Educational and Charitable Trust,” added Dinesh.

The Trust has really come a long way in the past 17 years by proving to be a guiding angel for every student coming from an economically backward family. The fund has ingrained the hunger of chasing their dreams of becoming chartered accountants, engineers and doctors. “My father works as a driver and it was difficult for him to provide coaching fees for my CA course, which was almost Rs 1 lakh. FECT sponsored my coaching and it is because of their immense support that has enabled me to secure a high position in Deloitte, which is one of the Big 4s of accounting firms,” said A Dharani, another beneficiary of the Trust.

(Edited by Srestha Choudhury)

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