In continuation of our project for the flood victims in the slum areas of Chennai, community level awareness and disaster preparedness programme were carried out.
The aim was to educate the community - children; older adults and people living with disabilities our primary focus make them better prepared for a disaster.
The community level training was imparted to the people living in Thiru.V.Ka Nagar, Dr.Giriappa Road and Thomas Road, Teynampet, Chennai. Around 397 participants where children, older adults and neighbours living in that surrounding acted as participants in the training programme. They were educated on immediate first aid, planning which involved identifying organizational resources, formation of teams, determining the roles and responsibilities, communication touch up with neigbhouring communities, etc. to ensure that the response system functions successfully. The training programme was facilitated with the help of Mr.Palani, Chariman, Red Cross Society, Chennai City; Mr.Lawrence, Demo Organizer, Red Cross Society; Mr.Subramaniyan, First Aid Trainer.
The participants kept the training session very active by their constant interaction with the resource person, clearing their queries during rescuing period, immediate sanitary measures they need to adapt to protect themselves from diseases, etc. By the end of the training programme the people of this locality had a clear perspective on flood preparedness.
One community member aged 50 years, is a parent of three children, the younger two pursuing their schooling while their eldest son discontinued education as the family demanded his early employment to support the family. He is a painter by profession and wages are daily based. “We have all experienced the disaster caused by November 2015 floods in Chennai and during that critical moment we had no idea as to how to react to such situations. We came to know about the awareness programme carried out in our slums and participated in the same. It has educated me on First Aid and the practical demonstration of training has helped me to understand and learn how to lift a disabled/old aged person, calling for support during fire incidents, pumping motions, etc. I am so, so glad that I attended this course. This was the first awareness programme that I have ever participated!”
A home maker, 29 years old residing at Dr.Giriappa road was intimated through her neighbours about the awareness programme carried out in their slums and she was very interested in participating in it. In her own words… “My family had a bitter experience during the November 2015 floods in Chennai where we had witnessed many deaths, and we deeply regret of our helpless situation. The floods had completely tossed up the lives of many. The training that I attended has kept me well informed on immediate first – aid in different situation, how to assist older adults and adults with disability , how to lift them as a single person which the trainer termed it as “ Single man lift and double man lift”. The training was framed completely in a practical session which made me understand it in a better way. It has revived my lost confidence to face any emergency situations and rescue victims courageously which I failed to do during the flood due to the panic I pursued on the sudden shock.”
A 47-year-old widow, resides at Thiru.V.Ka Nagar and is employed as a Home maid. After her husband’s demise she adopted a girl child who unfortunately has heart problem. “On the initial diagnosis of my daughter’s heart problem, I found it extremely difficult to handle the situation and was completely under panic. The situation worsened during the November 2015 floods in Chennai. I was unaware of the immediate first aid to be given to a person who has cardiac arrest. But now, the course I recently attended, was a on a clear cut conception and the training was much more informative than I anticipated. The course material was thoroughly relevant, instructive and engaging. It was enlightening to learn that helping and perhaps even saving a person’s life is far easier to handle than I had imagined.”
Thank you for your generous support!
After the worst flood of the season, the lane into the slums of Teynampet, Chennai were still slushy and the houses damp. Whether within a shelter or without, it's obvious that people left to fend for themselves were getting desperate.
It was at this point, we had intervened with the support of Global Giving to reach out to the neediest in the slums of Teynampet, Chennai.
The surveyed results helped us to narrow down the demands of 104 residents who are womenheaded families - widows, destitute, aged, women with disabilities , women whose husbands having drinking problems of Thiru.V.Ka Nagar and Thomas Road who were in need of proper roofing / construction materials.
The small dwelling units (max. 50 sq.ft) of these residents belonged to the oldest form of design with thatched roofing (with dried coconut/palm or used plastic carry bags collected from garbage’s) added to overcrowding and congestion. Without proper roofing, during the rainy season they were forced to seek shelters in the nearby colony which has well constructed roof, which left young children and elderly people without a safe and protected ambiance. The flood has worsened their situation leaving them in damaged shelter. The current financial strain has left these people unable to rebuild the damaged shelters. Our focused view was to support 104 families with proper construction materials to renovate the building thereby ensuring their safety.
104 families were in need of construction of roofing and required other forms of construction materials like bamboos, rope, bricks, cement, etc. to renovate their existing shelters.
In line to the project activity, the selected 104 families were provided with necessary materials based on the beneficiary’s need. For the construction of roofing tarpaulin sheets were provided with the needed construction materials.
The provision of these most basic items will allow those affected to have an assured shelter for themselves and take care of their family members under proper safe roofing.
The photos taken before and after the provision of construction materials will help you have a clear vision of the needs of these people. We will keep you updated of our activities.
Ms.Muniamma, 76 years old has been a resident of Thiru.V.Ka locality from the pre-Independence period. Her husband had passed away leaving her to take care of three sons. Though being a mother of three sons she has no financial support from any of them.
Her eldest son Mr.Sundar has severe drinking problem. He has two girl children the eldest doing her II grade schooling while the youngest just 4 years old. His wife is a mentally challenged person and they reside in a colony nearby. His drinking habit often ends with arguments within the family which also ends in him striking his wife and mother. Her eldest son’s drastic behavior has added more responsibility to her. Yes, she takes care of her two grandchildren and daughter-in-law too. She accepts any help that is offered by her neighbours be it in cash or kind.
Muniamma’s second son had expired at a young age whose details are unknown while her third son Sekar is a mentally challenged person too. He was forced with drugs at the age of 13, which in later years has made him to this critical situation. Though he does not consume drugs now, his past bitter experience has nipped his future. She is the only source of income supporting her family with the wages of Rs.80/- to Rs.100/- per day (1.5$) she earns from selling flowers.
This being her family situation, her battle against poverty had worsened during the floods in November 2015, which had left her stranded with nothing. Her only shelter was left with full of slush and sewage which had caused severe bad odour. Lost household things she owned.
Our interrogation with Muniamma made us feel we had stepped in at the right moment who had needed our immediate service. Our volunteers’ first initiative was to clean up her entire surrounding and fixing proper roofing for her family. She is now very happy that she has a good shelter which will protect her and her family from the climatic conditions.
The primary purpose of our mission is to provide poor, less educated youth the opportunity to acquire a skill and build a prospective career.
Continuing with the education is a big challenge for rural youth. Many youth fall under the unorganized sector, embedded with drawbacks like no social security, bonded labour, sexual harassment, etc.
To procure a successful career, youth need support both personally and financially. One of the best option that is available is the vocational skills training. Vocational training allows students to gain practical work skills within a short span of time as well as enhances their employability. For the quarter 155 young students were supported with nutritious lunch and travelling expenses to continue their skill programme without any difficulties.
Coming from a rural background, most of these students are deprived with a healthy nutritious meal, because they cannot afford to buy desired quality of food due to their family’s low purchasing power which adversely affects their health status. To help out these students with improving their health conditions we provide them healthy and nutritious meal during the five working days in a week. A month’s free meals offered to these students’ measures to 440 kilos of rice 80 kilos of grocery including cereals, pulses and other items and 120 kilos of vegetables. This regular intake of food has helped them with a balance diet.
To boost up the students interest in continuing their studies, we motivate them with awards and certificates. Every month the BEST student who excels in areas like regular attendance, academic performance and groomer is selected.
True story :
On completing grade XII, I employed myself in the brick kiln for daily wages, which supported my family needs. However life had completely changed when my family accepted my Evening Study Centre (ECS) tutor’s advice “It was the orientation programme, tutors motivation , support extended by providing a nutritious meal everyday and reimbursement of my travelling (from home to the community centre) helped me to continue the course without difficulties.” says Ashok.