The vision of Chaupal had sprung from the commitment of Dr. Rajinder Singh Tonk to his ancestral land. After a successful career spanning close to three decades in clinical practice and teaching, Dr. Tonk wanted to give back to the community he had grown up in. In the summer of 2007, he called on a number of like-minded friends. Several years ago, they had left their villages for Delhi in pursuit of better opportunities. Today, they had successful careers and a comfortable lifestyle. He shared with them his aspiration to provide care to the needy in his homestead. From this desire, a mission was born.
Every week, the team of motivated doctors would set up health camps in the villages in Haryana by pooling their own funds. Come Sunday morning, they would leave Delhi at 7AM, driving scores of kilometers in carpools, and spend over 12 hours seeing patients, dispensing medicines, conducting eye exams, performing specialty check-ups such as ECGs. Not only did they diagnose and provide relief for ailments afflicting the rural folk, they educated the locals about how to follow a healthy lifestyle, take care of their environment and village resources, and provide better opportunities for their children. Inspired by the collective decision-making and problem-solving of a chaupal that he had witnessed himself as a child in his own village, Dr. Rajinder Singh Tonk structured the volunteer efforts of his team.
On Aug 15, 2007, Dr. Tonk founded Chaupal, a not-for-profit committed to providing holistic, quality health care to villages that lack access to basic primary care. Today, Chaupal runs health programs through its community health center and holds health camps across Haryana providing specialty care and medications at nominal price. It aims to make villagers stakeholders in their own well-being and also address medical issues such as psychological health and HIV/AIDS that are often pushed to the sidelines.
Chaupal's programs are funded entirely by contributions from donors. It dedicates all its resources towards running the health camps and the health center.