Dr. Mahesh Nair – Empowering Change Agents for a Better World

“You don’t have to be a hero to accomplish great things – to compete. You can just be an ordinary chap, sufficiently motivated to reach challenging goals.” – Sir Edmund Hillary.

More often than not, the heroes in our lives don’t wear a cape. Though we do think some of them deserve it, at least an invisible one! They roam around us as common people only showing their heroic side when the moment arrives. And once done, they like to slip back into oblivion. They can be anyone, parents, friends, and sometimes, even complete strangers. They become the reason we hope for help, restoring our faith in humanity and human values.

What makes these individuals real heroes is that they serve humanity, not for their own interest but for the greater good. They are self-motivated and often start alone on their path of service. But they are also keen to pass on the baton and create more heroes out of common people. In 2007, when Dr. Mahesh Parameswaran Nair started his career as an IT Engineer in a leading MNC, he found a lacuna in his otherwise exciting routine. He noticed a regular rhythm to his life which revolved only around the electronic hum of computers and gadgets. He badly wanted to try something different in parallel which could yield him more happiness, positive vibes, emotional gratification, and possibly could change someone’s life on a positive note. 

Realizing that it is not just a passing feeling and that he needs to back his emotions, with action, Dr. Mahesh set out to start his NGO HOPE (Hold On Pain Ends). His NGO aims at working for the welfare of the underprivileged, raises relevant social issues, and also cares for nature, birds, and animals. Thus began his Social Entrepreneurship journey in parallel with his IT career. Since then, his social experiences have been widely shared with the youth. He also took up motivational speaking and has mentored many school/college-going students. 

Changing the mindset

Dr. Mahesh, through his work, aims to create change agents across the globe who could dedicate their time, energy, or resources towards Nation Building Process. He considers the youth to be the future of the nation. He firmly believes that the creation of opportunities in India is necessary to retain India’s talented youth. Once they are here, they get to see the various facets of society. This will help inspire them towards projects or activities which could not only bring out their hidden potentials but also empower the less privileged categories of society. Showcasing the issues prevalent in society is necessary to bring them to the mainstream and be acted upon. 

Creating Long-Term Solutions

Dr. Mahesh is aware that no matter what, people will eventually get bored off with a particular routine. So Innovations and Experimentations are required for overall sustainability. The working of an NGO is no exception to it. For instance, when they were cleaning Vellayani Lake, one of the freshwater drinking resources in Thiruvananthapuram district, the problem was more than what was apparent. The increase in the number of water hyacinths was creating drinking water scarcity and affecting fishing. His team started experimenting with the roots of water hyacinth and started producing eco-friendly sanitary pads. This not only helped them avoid the dumping of plastics in nature but also created job opportunities for single mothers, the elderly, and differently abled ladies. 

They reduced food unavailability issues through Community Refrigerator where excess food from homes or family get-togethers could be placed to feed hungry homeless people. They have also developed a mobile application named “KINDSERV” to convert all humanitarian offline services to online on a single fingertip click.

Spreading HOPE

Dr. Mahesh has always focused on creating a unique identity for HOPE. His primary focus on client satisfaction and trust has led HOPE to develop into an NGO that clients relate with and choose for humanitarian projects. The team always hits schools and colleges to build new networks. Adaptation and flexibility have been two must-have qualities required to bring everyone under a common umbrella. Opinions do vary from person to person in the team as is in every sector, but being the final decision maker Dr. Mahesh has always been cautious. He tends to think and have Plan B and Plan C also in place before executing Plan A. Foreseeing the risk factors (especially after the Pandemic) has been important for proper planning and execution.

Through his work and his style of working, he has always wanted to pass a message to his team, students, social media followers, or aspiring young Social Entrepreneurs that if a normal person like him could change someone’s life or bring a social impact, we all could collectively bring a huge positive social impact. “There is a leader in each amongst us. The platform is open and is all yours. The quality of work done was more important for me than the number of people involved. Many people aspire to do something good but always halt as they don’t know the answers for many of the questions like how, why, when, where, and what to? Being a mentor, guiding them to these answers, and showing them the right direction was my only responsibility. Creating independent change leaders across the country for a better India was my primary happiness. I believe the word “Charity” itself needs to be rephrased to “Social Responsibility”. I was always in search of fresh minds and young legs who could explore this platform and yield the best outputs. Self-improvisation and learning was always a part and parcel of this Journey and am still trying to improvise,” says Dr. Mahesh.

The pandemic and its lessons

Being a Software Engineer, Dr. Mahesh was always keen to brainstorm and do innovations, research, and add professionalism to the works or Projects he implemented through HOPE. This Pandemic era had a huge bad impact on many sectors worldwide but created new opportunities too.  It was during the pandemic that the team thought of taking up their services online. Individual donors or Institutions could connect with needy beneficiaries from anywhere in India and at any time for fulfilling blood, food, dress, book, toy, or various other requirements by using a mobile application. “We speak of Digital India and services too need to be digitalized in various sectors especially in rural and tribal areas also. Various social media platforms available today make it easy to connect with like-minded people, Entrepreneurs, Investors, Corporates or Volunteers across the globe,” adds Dr. Mahesh.

Message for Budding Entrepreneurs:

To all young entrepreneurs who wish to kick start – Opportunities never knock on your door. Rather rise, have short-term plans/milestones, and keep progressing towards your aim. If you don’t have an aim, have it first. Ask yourself. Know your boundaries. You may progress slow or may fall. But never stop. Learn from your failures. You can’t do things satisfying everyone. Feed your hunger, passion, and soul. Have answers to how, why, when, and where before actioning. Improvise, Learn and Innovate each year. Upgrade your skills and win trust. It’s not going to be easy. But make it look simple. Mark your presence and activities on social media platforms and indulge the public and institutions. You don’t have to search for opportunities. Be a sugar so that ants would surround you in large numbers. Never postpone good things because the time which has passed away Never returns. Be productive every second. You become what you think and act. Best wishes.

The road ahead

Dr. Mahesh has brought HOPE to its current stage through his passion, hard work, commitment, and dedication. He has been transparent in his working style and in constant search for new opportunities or innovations to bring a difference to the NGO and/or its deliverables. Going ahead, he wishes to create like-minded change agents across the globe who could devote their time and energy to uplifting the underprivileged and bringing a positive impact on any social issues. He dreams of a world free of any NGOs or Charity Organizations and everyone is made independent and self-sustainable. It’s each and everyone’s social responsibility to Emerge, Empower and Evolve for a better nation. “I dream of a developed India and see more exports happening from India than imports. I dream of an India where foreigners would love to come, earn, settle and invest. We are rich in natural resources, cultural heritage, and diversities in art, culture, etc still are unaware of how to use this efficiently for better output. Corona and Drastic climate changes are a huge threat or could take away from us the real pace or momentum. The regulations set by WHO or Government could affect the progress but being a service providing NGO we are bound to accept these challenges,” concludes Dr. Mahesh.


  • 2022 Inspiring Indian by Book of Records.
  • 2021 India Book of Records Holder for feeding maximum homeless across streets of India
  • 2021 Dettol India COVID Protector Title
  • 2021 Social Entrepreneurship Excellence Award from Smt Chinchu Rani, Honorable Minister of Diary, Government of Kerala.
  • 2021 Social Service Award by DLSA (District Legal Services Authority) Kasargod, for the upliftment or empowering works towards SC/ST people.
  • 2020 India Star Independent Award for

Philanthropy and Services

  • 2020 Shortlisted by Better India amongst top 6 Indians for COVID WARRIOR title
  • 2020 Man of Excellence Award by IAF
  • 2020 ICF Humanitarian Award from Shri. Pradeep Tamta. (Member of Parliament Rajya Sabha)
  • 2020 India Star Award for Philanthropy and Services
  • 2019 SevaKendram Award for Humanitarian


  • 2019 Art of Living Sevaretna Award
  • 2019 Indian Icon Award from Bollywood Actress Dia Mirza
  • 2018 TNF Indian Icon Award for Charity
  • 2017 Nirbhaya Debating Society Youth Icon

Award from Dr. Shashi Tharoor Member of Parliament

  • 2016 Best NGO Award for HOPE by Padmashree Jayaram