Story of Shiny Bhaggien

Shiny was born in 1987 in the village of Neyveli in Tamil Nadu to a seemingly happy family. Her father was a well-to-do civil engineer and her mother took care of the children and the household. They had a livestock of cows and hens and were one of the enviable families in their small village.

But things took a drastic turn when Shiny was 6-years-old. One day Shiny’s father announced that had met someone on one of his business trips and was leaving his family. As a result, her mother who had no work experience started going around to people asking for day labor work. She hoped to earn enough wages to feed her little ones.

Three years later, Shiny and her brother had to take a break from school. Upon noticing that Shiny started missing school, her class teacher from the Seventh Day Adventist School in Neyveli made a home visit to check in. Seeing their situation, the teacher asked the mother to send her children back to school assuring her that she’d find help. She contacted the local Child Impact partner office in hope that these two children could have their education sponsored.


As soon as she joined the Child Impact program, Shiny started shooting for the stars. She excelled academically and graduated from high school at the top of her class. With her whole life in front of her, she was ready to fulfill her dream of becoming a nurse. As a baby, she was given an expired vaccine which led to her developing a physical disability. Since then she dreamed of becoming a qualified nurse to ensure such a mistake wouldn’t happen to other babies.

After missing the deadline for the nursing entrance exam, a friend suggested that she work in the Institute of Speech and Hearing Impaired for the year and earn some pocket money for herself. Shiny decided to give it a try. She first set foot on the school premises on a sunny afternoon of June 6 and now 13-years later she continues to work there with her husband, the principal, and children.

“Before I came to this school, every day was a struggle. I often faced challenges due to my disability and found it hard to find my place in the world. But, when I entered the gates of ISHI on that sunny June day, I found my home,” says Shiny.

“They say God has a purpose for everyone and here I realized that this was God’s purpose for me in life, to love and help these children find a life beyond their disability. Here I saw that whatever had taken place over the years, my sponsorship, my education, my ignorance of the nursing entrance exams all had a purpose.”

“I have the best job, the best husband, and I have nothing to complain about. I am so lucky because, in this world, it is hard to get true love from one person, but here in this place, I get true love from hundreds of children. I will continue to spend my life trying my best serve these children through Christ who strengthens me with the hope that this
blessing will pass on to them and, on to others,” says Shiny.


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