16-year-old B Murugan had a plan for himself. He decided that he will board a bus and take his life at the destination he gets dropped at. 

The Hindu

However, as we have often noticed, our plans for our lives only work so much. 

Dejected after failing his class 10 exams, Murugan could not find a single reason to live. Ironically, he found it at the place where he was supposed to end his life.

The Hindu

The bus dropped him at Sirumugai in Coimbatore – about 500 kilometers from his hometown in Chennai.

Sitting on the footpath at 2 AM, Murugan met a man who gave him a new purpose. It was a cobbler who seemed to be in need of help. 

This was when he realised that there were people dealing with much bigger problems than his own. Sleeping hungry, being one of them. 


From that point on, Murugan decided that he will dedicate his life to feeding those who couldn’t afford to do it themselves. 

He did odd jobs, worked odd hours, but one thing remained constant: Taking out time and money for those in need.

Facebook/Nizhal Maiyam

Eventually, the company providing him with employment options shut down and he had to look for something new. 

So, he got a driving license made and started riding an auto. He used to earn 3000 per month, a huge chunk of which used to be spent in buying ingredients for food that he used to distribute at the school for differently-abled students nearby.

Facebook/Nizhal Maiyam

Seeing Murugan’s dedication, some other friends also joined him by contributing 100 each. 

Years later in 2008, Murugan started an organisation called Nizhal Maiyam, which means ‘shade to the homeless’. With the help of his allies, he feeds more than a thousand people every Sunday.

Facebook/Nizhal Maiyam

Most volunteers work during the week, collect money and towards the weekend, pool it in for food that is distributed to 25 shelter homes.

Murugan’s story has many lessons, but most important one is that we all serve a bigger purpose in life and have to realise what it is.

If you want to contribute to the organisation, you can contact them here.