In response to the church’s call to serve the needs of the time the Apostolic Carmel sisters came to Sancta Maria Mission Palliagaram in 1970- 71. The house which welcomed them was a cowshed with few minor modifications. The house reminded our pioneer sisters of the stable of Bethlehem.
Almost all the members of this rural parish belonged to Dalit families and were very poor. Our pioneer sister Mariam Teresa and our sisters worked with great love and zeal among the people. They visited families and prayed with them and counseled them. They took care of the sick, taught women tailoring and embroidery inspite of great hardship and challenges the sisters did not lose heart. The sisters of Christ King Convent at Tambaram were a great support to our mission in the beginning.
While the parish ministry was the main focus of this mission other activities according to the needs of the people of the area were also started that is Health Centre, Mother and Child care, People Based community health programme, Crèche was started at Palliagaram village and Kumaravadi village.
a) Health Centre
The new health centre was blessed and inaugurated 1977. In order to make healing services available to people, Mobile clinic was started at different centers.
b) Emergency and ambulance Service
Twenty four hour emergency services are available at our health centre. The patients who need specialized care are taken to Chengalpattu Medical College Hospital in our ambulance.
c) Community Health workers and medical services
They are given thorough training in herbal medicines and are encouraged to use herbal remedies more than allopathic medicines. They work as a team and are helpful to one another.
d) Child care and development
The crèches at Palliagaram and Kumaravadi villages provide very much needed child care. Children who were earlier undernourished and underweight are now healthy and free from diseases. The parents were happy because these children not only enjoy safety but also grow happy, healthy and strong.
e) Udayam Rehabilitation Centre Palliagaram – 1993
In the year 1993 marked another important milestone in the history of Amali Illam. When the programme for the disabled was initiated and in 1994 a community bassed rehabilitation programme was started. In Udayam Rehabilitation Centre the regular classes are continued. The special educators are given training to develop the skills of Mentally Challenged children.
Amali Illam convent celebrated silver jubilee and was blessed with many tangible signs of God’s approval of our work and mission in 1995 – 1996.
As we continue successfully the mission at Amali Illam. We also see the responsibility ahead of us. We the sisters rededicate ourselves to walk with Jesus who went in search of the weak and marginalized. May our Mother of Carmel and our founders Venerable Mother Veronica be our guide and support as we journey.
Salavakkam (Via )
Tamil Nadu – 603 107