1) Challenge: In most of the urban slums areas, the one common problem is lack of metered electricity supply. In the absence of metered connections, slum households hook wires on to electric poles nearby. This is fraught with risk of electrocution if the live wire touches a person. Further this is an unreliable source of electricity which particularly hampers studies of school going children, women’s housework and small livelihood activities after dusk.
2) Effort: Women group write petitions for the electricity connection, send reminders for slums where electricity connection is not installed. In slums where electricity supply system has been installed, UHRC’s social facilitators encourage slum families to understand the benefits of a dependable electricity supply. Families gradually realise the benefits observing early adopter families and avail the formal electricity connection which is safer (minimal risk of electrocution) and provides regular lighting and fan which helps children study and women carry out stitching and other activities.
3) Impact: Through petitions and in-person requests to Electricity Department in 2015-17, metered electricity connections reached approximately 80,000 slum population of Indore and Agra. These also include families living on rent availing electricity supply from the house owner’s main connection. Along with petitions and reminders, motivation by UHRC and other women group members, benefits of reliable electricity supply have gradually prompted more families to avail formal electricity connections which they were initially unaware of.
Polite requests were made by slum women’s groups to garbage cleaning functionaries of the municipal corporations of Indore and Agra in India. Linkages were also built with the garbage cleaning functionaries since cleaning of garbage is a regular requirement. These efforts resulted in slum lanes, streets, corners being cleaner than before.
Only in slums where such in-person requests did not succeed, the submission of slum-specific community petitions to senior officers of the Municipal Corporations of the city or Zonal office is done with support of Urban Health Resource Centre’s Social Facilitators.
Over 170,000 slum population received garbage cleaning services in Indore and Agra through the approaches described.
Dirt and garbage cleaned from street corner
Dirt removed from slum lanes
Slum lane looks neat after garbage is cleaned up
Jun 16, 2017
Psycho-emotional energy through creative activity
By Siddharth Agarwal - Project Leader
Slum ladies learn making jewellery
Creative & artistically fulfilling activities give a sense of freedom, purposefulness of action, stimulate psycho-emotional & right brain energies.
These help slum populations gather more strength, resilience, motivation and hope to better deal with the vagaries of life.
From the understanding of neuro-physiology and from medical training and practice, it emerges that emotional energy is a component of healing while trying to help people stay or become healthy. Emotional energy then manifests in more zealous efforts for improving health, nutrition, well-being.
Urban Health Resource Centre utilises inherent human creative energies to motivate slum women to experience a sense of well-being and gather more energy for slum improvement efforts.