Sewa International Volunteer Madan Luthra Named Texas ‘Volunteer of the Year’
Indian American Sewa International volunteer Madan Luthra was recently honored with the 2021 Volunteer of the Year award by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott. (photo provided)
India-West Staff Reporter
Sewa International Oct. 16 announced that Sewa Indian American volunteer Dr. Madan Luthra, from Houston, has been honored with the 2021 “Volunteer of the Year Award” by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott for his commendable service to the community.
Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott, honorary chair of the 2021 Governor’s Volunteer Awards, announced the 38th annual Governor’s Volunteer Awards on Oct. 12.
“These awards honor the exemplary service of individuals and organizations that have made a significant and measurable contribution to Texas Communities through service and volunteering in the past year. The awardees were selected for engaging in volunteer service that addresses a critical need, makes a positive impact on the community and inspires others to get involved in their cause or community,” the First Lady noted.
These awards are administered by the One Star Foundation and, along with Luthra, eight individuals and four organizations received the honor in different categories.
As COVID-19 began to impact the Houston community, Luthra, a retired scientist, volunteered more than 30 hours a week to support families in distress through Sewa International’s Family Services program, the release notes.
Not confining to one outreach or help initiative, he not only answered calls on Sewa International’s helpline, but he also reached out to help families receive groceries and supplies, deal with the difficult task of funeral arrangements, and help in local food and COVID-19 vaccination drives, it said.
When COVID-19 cases began to take a major toll, Luthra worked with other Sewa volunteers to create a website, sewacovidplasma.org, to connect plasma donors with COVID-19 patients undergoing convalescent plasma therapy, the release said.
Hindus of Greater Houston conferred the 2020 “Akhil Chopra Unsung Heroes Award” on him. The Houston Chronicle newspaper featured him in its “Heroes of the Front Line” series, it said.