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Against All Odds - Manjusha's Story


In the heart of a quaint village, amidst the simple joys and hardships of rural life, lived a spirited fifteen-year-old girl named Manjusha. Despite the difficult surroundings, her dreams soared high, reaching for the glitz and glamor of big cities and the promise of a better life. Yet, her reality was painted with hues of adversity, growing up alongside three siblings—a sister battling Type 1 Diabetes since the tender age of two, and a brother with cerebral palsy.  Obviously, her mother had her hands full taking care of the kids and her father tirelessly striving to make ends meet. Yet Manjusha embraced each day with a happy-go-lucky spirit, yet keenly attuned to the challenges that chronic illness, poverty, and societal stigma brought to her doorstep.


Determined to conquer the odds, Manjusha set her sights on a future with wealth, believing it to be the panacea for her family's struggles. However, destiny unfolded its plans in unexpected ways. At the age of fourteen, Manjusha's own health began to falter—weight loss, insatiable thirst, and hunger pangs served as harbingers of a new challenge: diabetes. Armed with her sister's glucometer, she confronted the harsh reality of her diagnosis, embarking on a journey of self-care and resilience.  This time she came to UDAAN, not to give her sister company but to start her own therapy.


Navigating uncertainty, Manjusha grappled with questions that loomed large: Would her dreams remain just that—distant fantasies? Could she carve a path to success amidst the shadows of adversity? Manjusha settled and learned to manage her diabetes well first! Consequently focusing on academics, and with UDAANs support and backing she was gearing up for a career as a doctor! 


Fate again had other plans for her. Her brother passed away and she landed in clinical depression. Manjusha refused to succumb to the situation. Seeking solace in therapy and with unwavering resilience, she emerged stronger, her spirit undimmed. She worked part time in UDAAN, volunteering to help others all while pursuing a graduation in Nutrition.

Parallelly, she trained to become a certified diabetes educator. Fiercely independent and ambitious, she went on to pursue her masters in dietetics. At UDAAN everyone  saw a bright, caring girl, who had the empathy and conviction to give back to her community, share an understanding with them and making them happier.


Today, Manjusha stands tall as a testament to resilience— hope for her community and a symbol of triumph over adversity, all with her bright smile and dreams. Today she is a nutritionist at UDAAN, she is one of the first Indian trekker of Indian One UP challenge and one of the first T1D national leaders selected by Diabetes India, along with being part of IMPATIENT program by JDRF.



Her journey from beneficiary to provider at UDAAN speaks volumes of her unwavering spirit and boundless compassion. As she extends a helping hand to others, UDAAN celebrates her as a HERO—a shining example of the indomitable human spirit. Manjusha, you are a true inspiration.







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Bhakti Deshmukh
Bhakti Deshmukh
08 may

The title of the story is so appropriate. Really an inspirational story against all odds ! More power to you dear Manjusha 💙

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