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The 71st Annual General Body Meeting (AGBM) of CHAI was inaugurated on 11 October 2014 at Canossa High School, Andheri East, Mumbai, with Holy Eucharist celebrated by His Grace Prakash Mallavarapu, Archbishop of Visakhapatnam, and Ecclesiastical Advisor to CHAI.  There were more than 750 delegates representing CHAI Member Institutions from all over the country.

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 IMG_4710Following the Eucharist, the flag of CHAI was hoisted by Most Rev Prakash Mallavarapu, Archbishop of Vishakapatnam, and Ecclesiastical Advisor of CHAI

The inaugural function was graced by His Grace Archbishop Prakash Mallavarapu; Rt Rev Thomas Elavanal, Bishop of Kalyan;  Rt Rev Dominic Savio, Auxiliary Bishop of Mumbai; Rev Fr V M Thomas, National President, CRI;  Rev Fr Mathew Abraham, Secretary CBCI Health Commission;  Dr Santosh Mathew, Executive Director of EHA; Sr Dr Lucian, President of Sister Doctors’ Forum of India; Mrs Sheetal John, TB Activist; Dr Pieter Reijer, Misereor Germany; and Sr Saumya, the winner of the Florence Nightingale Award for Nursing 2014 along with Rev Fr Julius Arackal CMI, President of CHAI; and  Rev Dr Tomi Thomas, IMS, Director-General of CHAI.IMG_4799

Rev Fr Julius Arackal, President of CHAI, extended a hearty welcome to everyone in the gathering.  “I am very much excited to see such an august gathering and I am sure sincere and collective effort made by all of us will transform CHAI network into a very strong and effective force in the health care sector”, he observed.

IMG_4843Rev Dr Tomi Thomas, IMS, Director-General, CHAI, gave the highlights of the AGBM. Concluding the presentation, he wished everyone a meaningful participation and said that he looked forward to having advice and suggestions so that the Director-General and team at Central Office can effectively play the role of a facilitator for Change, a Change for our times.

Sr Saumya, FCC, winner of the Florence Nightingale Award for Nursing 2014 was felicitated by His Grace Archbishop Prakash Mallavarapu. His Grace wished her all the best and blessed her in the name of the Lord to contribute more to the country and the Catholic Church in the coming years. In his message to the gathering, he said: “I am pleased to see that National Organizations such as CBCI Health Commission, Caritas, CRI, SDFI, and CNGI and CHAI are working together. The Strategic Planning Process that has been initiated a while ago is gathering momentum.Felicitation of Sr Sowmya And, at the end of the process let us hope to see a strengthened, massive CHAI network armed with an appropriate plan of action confidently marching to its centenary. My sincere appreciation for the Executive Board and the Director-General of CHAI for efficiently managing the organization with a committed staff.”

Rt Rev Thomas Elavanal in his presidential address expressed his immense pleasure at seeing such wonderful congregation of participants and he concluded his speech thus: “Organizations like CHAI can render health care alone and in partnership with government thereby strengthening the health care delivery system of the country. The Strategic Planning exercise that CHAI is undergoing now will help the organization to reposition itself and go forward with a well-thought-out plan of action. A strengthened network of CHAI can efficiently play the role of a facilitator for change.”

Dr Santhosh Mathew, Executive Director, Emmanuel Hospital Association (EHA), released the Annual Herbal Calendar 2015. Following that, Rev Fr V M Thomas, National President, Conference of Religious India (CRI), released the Silver Jubilee issue of Health Action.Release of Health Action

Short but sweet speeches were made by Most Rev Dominic Savio, Rev Fr Mathew Abraham, Sr Dr Lucian, Dr Pieter Reijer and Mrs Sheetal John. They were all full praise for the way CHAI is reaching out to people, especially those belonging to the lower strata of society with succour and support.

The inaugural function closed with a vote of thanks by Sr Sabeena, SSpS, , President of the host CHAI Western region.

Scientific Session

Following the inaugural function Scientific Session started. It focused on the theme of the AGBM, “Communicable and Non-communicable Diseases – Thrust of CHAI”.  Dr. Lipeeka Parulekar, MD, Internal Medicine, Holy Family Hospital, Mumbai spoke about communicable diseases. Dr. D. K. Khanna, Medical Director, Holy Spirit Hospital, Mumbai spoke about Non-communicable diseases. Their presentations helped members to understand the implications and the threats the humanity faces.

There was a panel discussion on National Collaboration led by the moderator Rev. Fr John Vattamattam SVD, the convener of Strategic Planning Process. Rev. Dr. Mathew Abraham, Health secretary, CBCI, Rev. Fr. V.M. Thomas, National President, CRI, Rev. Sr. Dr. Lucian, President, SDFI, Ms. Anubinda Varkey, Executive Director, CCH, and Rev. Dr. Tomi Thomas, Director General, CHAI were the panel members who shared their views about the collaboration.

The day culminated with colourful and spectacular cultural programme organized by CHAW with the help of local member institutions who enthralled the gathering.

12 October, 2014

The second day of the AGBM started with the Eucharistic celebration. The celebrant Rev. Bishop Thomas Elavanal, Bishop of Kalyan, offered the Holy Mass.

 CHAI’s mission is not just focused on current issues. Looking at the future and searching for a vision, there was a panel discussion on “Future Possibilities for CHAI”. The moderator Dr. Suresh Arkattay, Consultant, CHAI led the panel. Mr. Kartik Chauhan, Clinton Health Initiative, and Mr. M.N. Rao, PanaMed, and Dr. Suresh Arkatty were the presenters.

After the tea break, the Regional Units presented their regional reports which continued after lunch.  Following that the business session was conducted.  Rev. Sr. Deena, Secretary, CHAI, presented the minutes of the 70th AGBM. Rev. Dr. Tomi Thomas, IMS,  presented the Annual Report 2013- 2014. Rev. Sr. Sneha, Treasurer, CHAI, read the Financial Statement of Accounts and it was approved by the members. The business session was concluded with final remarks by Fr Julius Arackal, President, CHAI, and vote of thanks by Rev. Sr. Alphonse Sebastian, II Vice – President, CHAI.

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