History of Melam Foundation

The Turning Point

Kurian John Melamparambil's father, M.V. John's death due to a Cardiac Arrest made him stop, think and realize the value of life. As it was a Sunday, his family could not give his father the kind of treatment, which could have perhaps saved him. On May 28th 1978, in the prime of his youth, the sudden and shocking demise of his father shook his life. His father died soon after he had the attack. The dying man's last words were, "Oh God free me from this pain". These last words of his father made a lasting impression on his son, Kurian John Melamparambil.

The loss of a father, friend and guiding figure for him was the beginning of the thought process that led to his humanitarian activities. His helplessness in not being able to do anything that could stop his father's untimely death made him think of ways by which he could help in preventing others from suffering a similar fate or loss. This idea that was born in that tragic moment lingered in his thoughts and laid the foundation for the starting of a noble venture.

On 10th September 1986, Kurian John Melamparambil formally started the Melamparambil Varghese John Memorial Charities (M.V.J.M. Charities) named after his father, late Sri. M.V. John. The main objective of the Organization is to help and support poor and needy patients by providing medical treatment for their ailments. All patients who approached him were given treatment irrespective of caste, creed, religion or any kind of prejudice. He made it a point to ensure that whosoever approached him was given treatment, and eventually made self-dependent in their health to the maximum extent possible. Scholarships are given to deserving children of the patients, and also housing, clothing and food to their dependants during the period of treatment, if required. For the last 15 years, Kurian John has been providing free lunch for more than 300 in-patients at the Government Hospital, Thiruvalla daily. The food is prepared and distributed under the supervision of Indian Red Cross Society, Thiruvalla.With the interest earned from the corpus fund, and contribution from his salary, he expanded his activities without any publicity or fanfare.

The Need for More Financial Resources

As the activities of Melam Foundation progressed and grew rapidly, Kurian John Melamparambil felt the constraints of his own resources and realized the need for urgent funds. He strongly felt that these funds should be generated through some venture of his own. This intense feeling coupled with meticulous planning resulted in the establishment of a small-scale industry named M.V.J. Foods under the brand name MELAM - for a range of foods products in the year 1992, giving up his job at Malayala Manorama. He could be one of the few in the country who would have implemented the principle of "bootstrapping" in its full essence. He had limited amount of money as capital to invest.

The unique ideas in the business model framed by him ensured that the business ran profitably with full support of all its stakeholders. Thus, a major portion of its profit was shared with the less fortunate in the society.

As the business progressed, the income of Kurian John Melamparambil increased, which was channeled directly to the fund which resulted in the increased activities of Melam Foundation Today, Melam Charities has provided more than 154000 poor and needy patients through 1025 hospitals.

Satellite gets Launched

The main purpose of creation of Melam business was to generate funds for the charities. Kurian John has managed to keep Melam Foundation independent of any external funds. Kurian John consider "Melam Business" as a rocket or launch vehicle for launching the satellite "Melam Foundation". He felt that Melam Foundation has reached its orbit safely and it was time for Melam business to be separated from Melam foundation, similar to the rocket separating from its satellite. After about 5 years of careful scrutiny, he struck a deal with a business house to hand over Melam business to focus more on humanitarian and social activities.