Set amid rolling hills and flanked by pine forest across six acres of woodland, SAN-KER is an institution which provides affordable quality psychiatric care. We provide this care regardless of a person’s personal status. What today is a modern facility with a team of committed professionals began as one man’s concern for the chronically mentally ill in a converted cowshed in 1990.
SAN-KER in Khasi means growth within protection. It is thus an institution for personal growth within the all-encompassing embrace of God’s love. Our motto is “……by love serve one another” (Galatians 5:13) a quotation from the Bible. We understand that as human beings we are unable to cure disease but can function only as instruments leading our fellow sufferers to the healing powers of God, as we understand Him. This is reflected in our emblem where two hands hold up a person depicted by a head to the healing power above.
Our Mission Statement is to provide affordable quality psychiatric care in the spirit of true Christian love as exhorted in our motto
Early in my undergraduate days I noticed that there were a number of people from the region coming to Delhi for treatment of various mental disorders. Eminent teachers in Psychiatry and Clinical Psychology sparked an interest and a decision was taken to take up Psychiatry as a speciality. At the time of completing my specialisation, an elder brother died suddenly and I had to come home for a while. The plight of the chronically mentally ill committed me to decide to try and change their lot. The frustration of working in the governmental system with its apathy and callous neglect led me to explore alternatives to conventional infrastructure through which the care of these unfortunates could be improved. However, even in the existing NGO community at that time there was no awareness of the plight of the mentally ill and there seemed to be no hope of any support from them. It was then that the Meghalaya Industrial Development Corporation started a scheme for doctors wanting to open private health care facilities. The Managing Director was able to understand the need and agreed to support the idea that quality psychiatric care could be provided at an affordable cost. This was in spite of the fact that the MIDC is a commercial financial institution.
We commenced our work from converted cowsheds on the 9th June 1990 with 10 beds to which another 10 had to be added within two weeks in another cowshed. There were no outpatient or emergency services initially but these had to be added on within a few months.
We started with the goal to provide affordable quality care to the mentally ill, especially those with chronic disease. This has been attained to a large extent as borne out by the fact that we cater to patients from neighbouring states and even from as far away as Mumbai and Kolkata. We are now at the point where we feel that our vision should be expanded by extending the range of our services by also provide training to various categories of mental health professionals.
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