Free Flu Vaccinations Brings IACF and FHF Together at Turning Point Center

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At the free  flu vaccination drive, from left, Kamala Raghavan, Dr. Neera Bhutani, the Turning Point Center General Manager, Panna Bhatia, Dhiren Bhatia, Dr. Vanitha Reddy-Pothuri, Dr. Nalinakshi Rangala and Leela Krishnamurthy

By Jawahar Malhotra

SPRING BRANCH: Though January is almost over, the common flu strains that linger know no difference and linger around for many more weeks to come, putting the weakest among us at peril of coming down with terrible symptoms.  Recognising this, the Indo American Charity Foundation teamed up with Friends Helping Friends, both of them non-profit organizations with outreach into the mainstream community, to help distribute free vaccinations this past Sunday, January 18.
This event was the first in the IACF’s new initiative to joint-venture with other community groups to reach the objectives in its vision statement. Spearheaded at the IACF by Dr. Mahendra Jain, Dr. Ajay Jain and Dr. Vanitha Reddy-Pothuri and at FHF by Panna Bhatia and Dr. Neera Bhutani, the two teams of volunteers met at the Turning Point Center located at 1701 Jacquelyn Drive in Spring Branch, which is a 34-unit apartment complex started in 1988 by Isha Salas-Deselle to care for the homeless elderly.


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Turning Point residents and others who came to receive the free vaccinations

Other volunteers for IACF were newly-elected Board Director Anand Chauhan and his wife, Dr. Ashima Chauhan and Dr. Nalinakshi Rangala, as well and IACF President Kamala Raghavan; and for FHF Dr. Manek Hussein, Dhiren Bhatia and Leela Krishnamurthy. About 25 free vaccinations were given out and there are still more left over which the two groups intend to distribute free at other future events.
“This demonstrates that we can do a lot by working together with our partners,” said Raghavan after the event. Salas-Deselle is planning on opening a center for women and children soon and Raghavan believes there would be an opportunity for the IACF to help in that effort.