787. Rathaven Gunaratnarajah
Rathaven Gunaratnarajah, from London, is the founder of ‘The Little Things’, a charity working to improve healthcare in developing countries.
Since registering ‘The Little Things’ with the Charity Commission in 2015, Rathaven has overseen major projects for the charity, including funding an eye clinic in Tanzania and providing a number of hospitals in Sri Lanka with necessary life-saving medical equipment. Rathaven runs the charity with the help of student volunteers who assist in managing the numerous projects and raising awareness of the charity’s work. Their previous fundraising achievements include organising adventurous events for students to partake in, such as skydiving, mountain treks and marathon football matches. ‘The Little Things’ organised their first New Year’s Ball earlier this year and it was reportedly a huge success. Collectively, these fundraising events have allowed The Little Things to spend approximately £95,000 on their healthcare projects to date. Rathaven has started leading next year’s appeal with the aim of supporting a hospital in rural Nepal that serves a population of 300,000.
In a personal letter to Rathaven, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“Your work with ‘The Little Things’ is improving access to vital medical equipment for thousands of people and is making a real difference in communities around the world. Your commitment is highly commendable, and you should be proud of how you have inspired others to volunteer for the cause.”
Wes Streeting, Rathaven’s local MP, said:
“It is fantastic news that Rathaven has been given the Points of Light award by the Prime Minister for his outstanding work helping others in need.
“Healthcare in developing countries still remains a significant challenge, especially in the more remote areas in which ‘The Little Things’ operates. Growing a charity from an idea to one which raises thousands of pounds and has a real impact on many lives isn’t easy, which makes Rathaven’s achievements all the more impressive.
“Massive congratulations to Rathaven and the other volunteers involved – I hope ‘The Little Things’ continues to grow for many years to come.”
“I am tremendously delighted and sincerely grateful to the Prime Minister for honouring me with a Points of Light award. It truly is inspiring and empowering to see ‘The Little Things’ being recognised, and I would like to clarify that this award is not just in recognition of my efforts, but also in recognition of all the members that have contributed their time and effort voluntarily to support the charity since its inception.
“‘The Little Things’ was founded on the principles of compassion and empathy, with the charity’s primary aim being to improve healthcare in developing countries. I am determined to ensure that ‘The Little Things’ continues to grow and continues to improve access to healthcare, by providing vital medical equipment to hospitals in developing countries that rely on our aid.”
The daily Points of Light award recognises outstanding individual volunteers - people who are making a change in their community.Volunteer now