REACH (Resource Group for Education and Advocacy for Community Health)

Mission: To work for a TB free society. Goals: - To combat the threat of TB involving all sections of the community - To ensure that the guidelines of the Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program of the Government of India (RNTCP) is accessible to private medical practitioners who cater to large section of the population - To increase public awareness of TB - To act as a liaising body between the different deliverers of health care, both governmental and non-governmental
Oct 28, 2014

Providing Food Support - Helps TB patients

Greetings to all,

REACH is a nonprofit organization working in Chennai, India . Our primary activity is patient care and support. We help TB patients to know about their disease, explain the treatment options available, monitor their treatment, and support them during their journey from sickness to cure.

We have registered a total of 325 cases in this year, of which 103 were registered in the last three months. Of them about 75 patients are being provided support with patient aid.  

We offer patient aid like Rice and Dhal (a staple food of South India), Kanchee powder (a nutritious mix of many types of lentils) Wheat (for diabetic patients) to patients who find it difficult to provide for themselves during their TB treatment. This is done by the field officers, who make the initial assessment by visiting the homes of the patients and directly interacting with all members in the family.

REACH provides this patient aid to all patients who deserve it. This aid is provided once a month for the entire duration of treatment. There are patients who may not have access to cooking as they may be living on the pavements. In such situations, we arrange for food from a nearby hotel to provide at least one nutritious meal for the patients.  

This intervention often helps patients complete the course of treatment successfully. Sometimes lack of food can be an important reason for the patient to stop treatment.

REACH is able to reach out to the poor and needy patients through your active support. We want to thank all the donors for supporting such initiatives as they help us bring change in TB patients lives.

Every patient who is cured, stops spreading TB, and every life saved is a child, mother, or father who will go on to live a longer, TB-free life.

 

Quotes from TB Patients who receive food support

“I am not able to work now because of TB. When you started providing me with food support I am able to eat much better and am recovering. Thank you for your care” Patient-XXX

“I am not able to eat any solid food. The Kanchee powder provided by REACH is made for me by my mother. She mixes it with milk and makes it in a liquid consistency so that I can drink it. It’s the only food I am having right now.”-Patient –XXX

“I feel much better. Not only does this amma (means mother as a reference to the REACH field officer) from REACH gives me my medicines with love and care, she also gives me a food coupon thru which I get meals from an hotel near where I stay. I do not think I can take my treatment otherwise.”- Patient XXX

Jul 28, 2014

REACH TB HELPLINE- providing information on TB

Poster of Actor Suriya promoting the TB Helpline
Poster of Actor Suriya promoting the TB Helpline

Dear Donor,

It is the right of all TB patients and people to receive information about TB, diagnosis and treatment. Proper communication can help improve adherence of TB treatment among patients and stop the disease from spreading to others in the community. Information helps patients and people to make better decisions about their health.

Many times there is a dearth of such information in the community. Tuberculosis being associated with apathy and stigma prevents patients from accepting or learning about their disease.

In order to help patients and general public , REACH has been operating a TB Helpline since 2010.The helpline is handled by a REACH staff, who is trained to provide information on the basics of TB and guide people on treatment.

Tring…Tring… on the Helpline and people do want to know about TB.  Here is a sample of their queries-

  • My three and half daughter often gets cough and cold. Do you think she needs to be diagnosed for TB?
  • My father has been diagnosed by a doctor for TB. He has just prescribed anti TB drugs and given it to my father. As I was a medical representative I was able to realize that he was giving TB treatment. I am shocked that no mention of the disease was told to the patient and now I want to ensure that I get good diagnosis and treatment for my father? Please guide me?
  • I want to know more about the work that you’re doing as an organization?
  • I have taken 7 months of TB treatment privately? Is the treatment best in government or private?
  • I have been affected with TB twice? Where can I go for diagnosis?
  • Is asthma hereditary and is it asthma that becomes TB later on in years?
  • I know someone who has discontinued TB treatment? How can I help him?
  • I get wounds in my legs often. Can it be TB?
  • I have been diagnosed as having TB in the eye? Can a person be affected in the eye with TB?
  • My sister has MDR TB/Can it be cured completely?
  • My wife has not been responding to TB treatment for 3 months? What should I do?
  • I have the habit of smoking? Do you think I can get TB?
  • I have cough for more than 3 weeks? where should I go?
  • I have a person who is buying TB drugs? How can I help him?

We want to thank donors like you who play an important role in keeping the TB Helpline in operation.

Here’s what a caller on the Helpline said, after receiving information on TB for himself-

“ You will never know how this information on TB has helped me. It has helped me to move towards hope of a better life. Knowing about the TB Helpline, was a magic moment for me, orchestrated by the Divine Hand of God. I might never see you, but God is certainly using you to help people like me who need information on TB.”

We have received a total of more than 1000 calls so far.  Thanks for your support and do spread the word of our TB Helpline– 99620 63000  

Joseph responding to the Helpline Call in office
Joseph responding to the Helpline Call in office
May 2, 2014

Events organized for World TB Day in Tamil Nadu

Balloons signifying Hope for a TB free world
Balloons signifying Hope for a TB free world

Greetings to all!

World TB Day is observed on the 24th March every year. It marks the discovery of the TB Bacilli by Dr. Robert Koch in the year 1882.  This day provides an opportunity to increase awareness on TB and focus on the many issues that make TB control an enormous challenge.

We at REACH took an active part to organizing World TB Day events that make people more aware about TB in their everyday lives. The events focused on these objectives- to make patients and their families more aware of their role in controlling TB and reaching out to the general public and invite them to volunteer their time to stop TB.

Health Mela for TB Patients and their families

We organized a patient centric event, titled “Sandipom Sindhipom” (when translated reads as “Lets meet and think”) where we brought TB patients and their families together to strengthen and empower them, to help them voice out their challenges and concerns, and to know about Tuberculosis, their rights and responsibilities, and the roles that they could play in society to control TB. We invited patients from the government and also patients who were treated by private doctors.

The ambience of the school playground was converted to make it look like a Health Mela effect with 15 bright red stalls.  Banners containing slogans on TB were put up in and around the playground.Each stall had some specific games like balloon shooting, Aiming the Rings, Puzzle, Maze, Electric Buzzer, Kids Plane, Frog Jump, etc which the patients and their families could play. The families could also take an instant family photograph of themselves at one of the stalls. Refreshments and Tea was also distributed at one of the counters.

There were educational stalls which provided information on Tuberculosis, which was communicated to the audience through the Photo Exhibition Charts. The Rights and Responsibilities of TB Patients were displayed as a banner containing information on the Patient Charter. The patient charter is a document that sets out ways in which patients, community, health care workers and government, can work as partners to improve TB Care and enhancing its effectiveness. The roles that patients could play were also exhibited as a banner. The patients coming to this stall also received a form, which they had to fill on how they could contribute to the community for TB Care. Each of the stalls was managed by one of our staff, who ensured that the information was explained correctly and to clarify the doubts of the patients or their families.

Balloons were released into the air signifying hope for a TB free world and a pledge was taken by all to commit themselves for TB control efforts.

About 200 people participated in the event. It was a wonderful ambiance of fun and relaxation and at the same time we weaved in messages on TB, which can help patients open up to face the bigger challenge of TB control.

 Celebrity Engagement with a popular Movie Star

The second event of REACH was the TB awareness campaign focused on engaging the celebrity actor Suriya to make ordinary people to become interested in creating awareness for TB in their every day surroundings. The interested people registered themselves and received a TB kit containing pamphlets, posters and film CD on TB. They were to use these materials and participate in the campaign by doing programs for their community during the World TB Day week. After the programs they were to send in their feedback forms with the photographs of their events. Around 150 campaign kits were sent to people from different parts of our state Tamil Nadu and Awareness campaigns were conducted by the interested volunteers in many parts of the state of Tamil Nadu.

The credit of such events goes to all our donors who share our vision of a society where No one should die of Tuberculosis.

We at REACH hope to ignite a spark in all interested individuals and stakeholders to work towards a TB free world.  

You too are welcome to join us in the fight against Tuberculosis.

Thank You

Snacks distributed to patients after Registeration
Snacks distributed to patients after Registeration
Family Picture- Brings Joy to All
Family Picture- Brings Joy to All
A Glance of the Stalls
A Glance of the Stalls
Campaign Poster using Actor Suriya
Campaign Poster using Actor Suriya
REACH Team- together to STOP TB
REACH Team- together to STOP TB

donate now:

An anonymous donor is matching all new monthly recurring donations. Terms and conditions apply.
Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time.
Make a donation in honor or memory of:
What kind of card would you like to send?
How much would you like to donate?
  • $25
    give
  • $50
    give
  • $100
    give
  • $150
    give
  • $200
    give
  • $250
    give
  • $500
    give
  • $25
    each month
    give
  • $50
    each month
    give
  • $100
    each month
    give
  • $150
    each month
    give
  • $200
    each month
    give
  • $250
    each month
    give
  • $500
    each month
    give
  • $
    give
gift Make this donation a gift, in honor of, or in memory of someone?