Patient Advocate of the Month (September 2019) – Manhar Kochhar
Manhar Kochhar, 33-year- old City Chapter Leader from Delhi, is our FOM Patient Advocate of the month . Manhar was diagnosed with CML when he was only 17 years old .
It was time for him to join college (Manhar went to Khalsa College in Delhi) and this was supposed to be best time in life – carefree and happy . Manhar tells us however that he never felt that excitement because he had been diagnosed with cancer and felt that the disease will completely overtake his life and he would live only for maybe three years ? BUT those three years became six, and then nine and slowly ‘LIFE’ took another meaning for him.
His family includes his wife , parents and a brother and Manhar has a very strong and supportive friends circle too .
Besides FOM being ‘Friends of Max’, for him it also stands for ‘Friends of Manhar’. His friends have been his constant support throughout his struggle.
Recently, he travelled from Delhi to help conduct the Jaipur Support Group Meet in collaboration with the Teenage and Young Adult Cancer Foundation which took place on 20th September.
He volunteers with the Lymphoma Support Group of India (which also organises ‘Chai for Lymphoma’ awareness meetings ) and has started a group called ‘Sewa Daar’ with his friends . They meet every Sunday and donate food, clothes, tea & other necessities to needy people in their neighbourhood. Hi
Manhar is a very enthusiastic member of FOM. He is the one point FOM contact at the Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute and Research Centre (RGCI) in Delhi and is in charge of organising every ‘Chai for Cancer’ Adda hosted by the hospital. He volunteers for several activities in patient Support Group Meetings. He loves interacting with patients and caregivers.
He tells us that, one of his most memorable moments was when a CML patient walked up to him at a Patient Support Group Meeting after his presentation and telling him that listening to him gave her a lot of hope and encouragement. It was then that he decided that he will never miss a single Patient Support Group Meeting. Motivating others gives him absolute joy.
His motto in life is, ‘Ladoge Nahi to Jeetoge Kaise?’ which means ‘Until you fight how will you Win?’