Sep 9, 2021

Hopeful for a Better Tomorrow

Soniya, is a cheerful caretaker at one of our day-care centre (Balwadi) at Dewas. The children are less hesitant around her and over time, tend to develop a relish for her warm company.

Soniya recalls- her uncomplicated routine and the fun of group teaching before the pandemic hit. “The euphony of children singing aloud nursery rhymes in their own sweet voice, and playing with their animal themed flash cards- are some of my favourite moments that I hold in my bag of memories.” she says. She clearly remembers how a sense of togetherness helped the children groom into better individuals and develop self-confidence. She also recalls the ease with which the children would make friends and participate in activities together.

However, after COVID-19 hit India, nothing has remained the same.

Following the government’s safety guidelines and protocols, Centre-based Balwadi day-cares are not functional for the time being. But the caretakers of our Balwadis are now shifted to a new routine i.e. grouped day-care arrangement where they do activities with children in small groups. They can now entertain not more than five children in one sitting.

Our caretakers have also maintained a continuous supply of nutritious food for the children, helping lower the risk of malnutrition, especially during such trying times. Only parents are allowed to come to Balwadis and collect the food for their children in their own tiffin-boxes.

We hope that this situation will soon change and we will again see small children coming to Balwadis for their regular schedule. Times like these come with challenges of their own, yet caretakers like Soniya remains hopeful.

It is with the help from generous donors like you, that our committed caretakers are able to go beyond their role. We appreciate your acknowledgement of the fact that your donations can have such a profound impact on the lives of so many children. At present, Seva Mandir, in close collaboration with communities, is running 160 Balwadi centres catering to 4,451 children in Udaipur and Rajsamand districts of southern Rajasthan.Your support is invaluable to these children, and we dearly thank you for being with us.

Stay safe and healthy.

Regards

Atul Lekhra & the Seva Mandir Team

www.facebook.com/sevamandir 

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Sep 8, 2021

Preparing Villages for Covid-19 Third Wave

Dear Friend,

While the second wave of COVID-19 that hit our country left a trail of fatalities, in addition to economic and social crises, health experts warn of a third wave.

Our experience during the second wave shows that a set of measures would help face the third wave. Strengthening of local administration, civil society organizations lending them support and their synergic work with community collectives is a potential way of overcoming the situation, when it arises.

Through our HUM SAJAG (We are Alert) initiative we aim to build a pool of trained and equipped human resource base of 6,000 frontline workers and village volunteers in 1,500 villages spread across 14 blocks of Udaipur and Rajsamand district in 100 days. Establishing collective COVID management norms in villages through active village groups, youth, community and women leaders will be a core focus of this initiative. We plan the following:

1. To provide basic safety kits, diagnostic kits and a COVID safety protocol and education material reference book to 6,000 frontline staff and village volunteers.

2. To train and build capacities of over 6,000 front line workers and village volunteers through a comprehensive training module designed in consultation with health experts, Government IEC materials and other health-based organization. The training will majorly focus on critical aspects of addressing COVID-19, its spread, home isolation, monitoring, referrals, vaccination and post COVID care.

3. Activating village groups (10-12 members from youth, village institution leaders, women committed to minimize the impact of Covid-19 in villages) to understand and establish commonly agreed community norms to increase vaccination, reduce fear and myths and isolate in case of a potential third wave.

4. We aim to support block level Community Health Centers to help improve the health infrastructure for better management of COVID-19 at block level. Earlier we have connected such donors to government for supplementing the need of Oxygen concentrators in health institutes.

5. Reaching out the areas with most vaccination hesitation in southern Rajasthan using a combination of different traditional theatre forms and music. Actors will use popular folk songs to talk about many myths and fears of vaccination.

"If I feed my child after getting vaccinated, the virus will come through milk in the child." said one of the women. Pregnant and lactating women are experiencing higher doubts and hesitation towards vaccination. Through theatre and discussion, we will try to clarify these types of concerns.

Thank you for your precious support to our programme. Your support is a source of encouragement to us during this much needed time.  

We are also happy to share with you that we are participating in GlobalGiving’s Little by Little Campaign. This is a five-day crowdfunding campaign taking place from September 13-17. All eligible donations up to $50 per unique donor per organization will be matched at 50% during the campaign. So, this is a chance to double the impact of your donation. We hope that you will support us to get matching funds for our programme and for the communities we work with.

Stay safe and healthy.

Regards

Atul Lekhra & the Seva Mandir Team

Follow us on www.facebook.com/sevamandir 

Links:

Aug 18, 2021

A Teacher Who Saved Children Lives

Jeevan is a teacher at one of our Bridge School at Damana Talab village in southern Rajasthan. He is passionate and a dedicated teacher who always strives beyond his regular responsibilities. During one of his every day remote teaching visit during lockdown, he came to know about his 3 students- Radha, Lokesh and Lali who were living alone without parents and starving as there was no food left at home to eat.

After talking to the children, he found that their parents went to Gujarat state for doing labor work and got stuck due to sudden lockdown during the second wave. On seeing the vulnerable condition, Jeevan immediately requested their neighbors to look after these children till their parents were back and also arranged food through Panchayat (local government body) to meet their daily needs. With this timely help, these children came out of a big crisis.

Now, the parents are back and are grateful for the support provided by the teacher. Jeevan not only remain committed to his teaching profession but also go beyond to fulfill his duties. Humanity is much needed during these difficult times and Jeevan is a real example.

Young children in tribal areas of south Rajasthan are able to continue their education despite of all the challenges and pressure to drop out of education. We deeply thank you for all your support and do hope that you continue to support our project.

We are also happy to share with you that Seva Mandir’s education programme photo has been selected as a finalist in GlobalGiving’s 2021 Photo Contest!  The winning of this contest will surely uplift the spirit of our staff and motivate them further to continue the work in the fields.

Now, for winning the contest and rewards we need your precious support and vote. Request you to please VOTE for our photo. The link to our selected photo is: 

https://www.globalgiving.org/poll/vote/?pollOptionId=1641

Casting your ballot is easy: simply click to cast your vote on your chosen photo and jump over to your inbox to confirm your vote via email. Voting will take place from Monday, August 16, at 00:00:00 EDT until Friday, August 20, at 23:59:59 EDT.

Please get your friends vote too for Seva Mandir. Thank you so much in advance for your time and support.

Warm regards

Atul Lekhra & the Seva Mandir Team

Follow us on www.facebook.com/sevamandir 

Links:

 
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