In the spirit of #SomethingGood, we want to give a shout out to a North Texas teenager working extra hard this school year all while being a superhero in her community.
Naisha Gottipati is a 16-year old juggling her senior year at Coppell High School and just started virtual learning for her five AP classes.
No big deal.
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But she's doing all of this while managing a growing non-profit she launched over the summer called Healthcare Meals Inc.
She has been working hard to feed and supply PPE to countless hospital workers across DFW. She's not letting her busy schedule this school year get in the way of that, thanks to virtual learning.
"I would say it's gotten significantly easier so that I have more time to allocate both school and this because technically I can time my own learning. So that's the greatest part of this so far," she said. "I'm just grateful for the impact we're making on people."
In just three short months, Naisha has provided meals and face shields for five local hospitals including Parkland Memorial Hospital, Children’s Health, Methodist Dallas Medical Center, William P. Clements Jr. University Hospital, and John Peter Smith Hospital.
She's applied for her 501 (c) (3) and partnered with restaurants throughout the area like Chik-Fil-A, Whataburger, and Palio’s Pizza Cafe to deliver meals.
She's even secured donations and corporate sponsorships from five local businesses totaling more than $8,000.
Naisha says it's just all in a summer's work as she prepares to keep her mission going throughout the school year.
"I think that's just one thing that's important to remember. This pandemic has been going on a lot longer than we expected,” she said. “At the end of the day, this is the world we're living in, so might as well do something to better it, especially now."
Naisha said she was inspired to create the non-profit by her sister, who shared her experiences working the front lines during the COVID-19 crisis.
"I wanted to start something that I knew would help both her and other healthcare workers throughout Texas," she said.
Another source of inspiration comes from her grandfather, who practiced medicine in India. He offered free treatment to many patients in need.
"He didn't have to but he knew it was his duty to be a public servant. That was something that was really inspiring to me and I just wanted to be able to continue that," she said.
Naisha said she started off by contacting restaurants around her community to see if it was something feasible to do. Then she reached out the hospitals to partner with her new non-profit. From there, she connected those hospitals with the restaurants and scheduled deliveries based on donations that she received from the community.
"I couldn't have done it without help from so many people. My parents, the community around us, the hospital themselves for actually agreeing to this idea. Restaurants, donors," she said.
Naisha initially delivered many of the items herself but over time has been able to recruit several volunteers to help with both food and PPE deliveries. They now deliver to hospitals twice a week.
She’s currently in the process of securing more partnerships with smaller restaurants that are in need of business. Donations pay for the meals being delivered to the hospitals.
"We believe it's important for this to be a two way street with both the hospitals and businesses benefiting," she said.
If you would like to support her cause as a volunteer or with a donation, visit www.healthcaremeals.org.