Greetings from Seva Mandir!
I was reading the New York Times today - the artcile "As New Graduates Return to Nest, Economy Also Feels the Pain" and I also read the news on the Hindustan Times "Expect relief from inflation". It is a tough time. Everywhere in the world there is unrest. The divide between the rich and poor is growing bigger. There are many interpretations and theories explaining and forecasting the future as ever. Amidst all these news and views on politics, corruption, economy downturn etc, I came across a brief story which my colleagues have written, which I also want to share with you. The story is simple but has an interesting feel of 'hope'. Somewhere very far in Udaipur (in South Rajasthan), the immunization camps that you support are helping many children and women's lives.
Amidst all of this hustle and bustle and rough time, your continuing support and faith in this program endows thousands of women and children with blessings. We are deeply grateful to you for your help. I really hope you will enjoy reading this story. Please feel free to write to me for any queries.
Thanks again and with warm regards,
Kotra Block is located at a distance of 120kms from the city of Udaipur and is one of the remotest regions in Seva Mandir’s working areas. It is completely a tribal belt with a number of villages bordering the state of Gujarat. The region sees a lot of migration to Gujarat for livelihood and also to access healthcare as there is a dearth of such facilities in the area.
Seva Mandir conducts monthly immunization camps reaching out to 33 hamlets in Kotra block. The villages chosen are those which are remote and are not covered by the government health workers. The unique features of the camps are regularity of the camps monitored through use of date & time stamped photographs of the Immunization teams at the camp sites and a non-cash incentive package to encourage demand for immunization. The camps are conducted on a fixed date every month in a centrally located place in a hamlet easily accessible to majority of the households. The camps provide complete vaccination for children aged 0-1 year, booster doses for children above one year age and ante-natal checkups for pregnant women. In addition, the camps also provide treatment & referral for childhood illnesses.
In each village hamlet, the trained Traditional Birth Attendant is responsible informing the villagers about the immunization days and gathering the children and pregnant women at the camp site on immunization day. The Traditional Birth Attendant (TBA) goes around the village visiting each household to inform them about the forthcoming camp and also motivate them for immunization and antenatal care.
Immunization Camp at Sarli Naal
Sarli Naal, a village hamlet in Kotra block has its immunization camp on 21st of every month.
Atri Bai, the TBA of Sarli Naal has been working with Seva Mandir for 8 years. She narrated that before this camp, the closest one was a government run camp which was 3 kms away from this hamlet, making it difficult for the people to get their children immunized. The pregnant women too had to walk a long distance for their antenatal check ups. As a result, many of the women and children used to remain from getting immunized. Seva Mandir’s camp started in the year 2007, has come as a boon for the residents of the village as they could now get the services within a easy reach.
In the month of October 2011, the camp at Sarli Naal had 8 women who had come for antenatal checkups and seven children who had come for getting their vaccines.
Gavri, a 24 years old young mother had come to the camp for getting her seven month old son’s third dose of DPT vaccine. She had started coming to the camp when she was pregnant and had received both her tetanus shots and complete ante-natal checkups. Gavri agrees that the immunization is essential for both the mother and the child and is determined to take vaccination for her future pregnancies also.
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