Health Care Programs & Medical Camps for Rural Women:-

On behalf of the FSD organization and Vellore District Health Mission, we have conducted rural medical camp in the centers of Naickaneri, Kavalur and Jamunamarathur for three times during the year of 2013-2014. We created public awareness on the importance of health care, sanitation, prevention of diseases and importance of cleanliness and food habits. During these programs, we have created awareness on child health care, women’s health care, types of diseases and solutions for solving health problems and talked about related subjects. Apart from this, we also organized medical camps for the benefit of rural and tribal communities.

Because of the rural health care camps; we have treated about 1250 people in three camps with the help and cooperation of Lions Club and World Society. The Doctors did several treatments and referred cases for free minor surgeries to the nearby hospitals. Ramani who had a tumour growing on her forehead was visiting our medical camp and got treatment. She said she had no money to remove that tumour; she brought some of her medical report to our doctors. She was asked to go through a surgery but it was very costly so she had given up hope because her family could not effort 5,000 rupees towards this surgery. Then, with the help of medical camp she was cured with the special care. Later, when we visited her in the village, she said that “it would have cost me a lot and it was impossible for me and my family and I am thankful for this medical camp and your service to me.” Similarly many other people were treated well and some of them are referred to Hospitals that are located in Vaniyambadi, Vellore and
Kanchipuram. Around 300 patients were treated properly in every each in each location. The medical camp programme was very successful and it was possible because of the commitment and holy service by the doctors. Local village people provided lunch and made other arrangements for the medical team at these health care camps. And our Medical camp was benefited to over 1500 people both from rural and tribal villages.

Training Programme on ECCE Policy:-

After the Bhubaneswar consultation on National Early Childhood Care and Education Policy (ECCE), we have organised field visits to different Anganwadi Centers in various districts to motivate the Anganwadi Workers to follow ECCE guidelines. During our visit, we encouraged them to promote community participation in developing health, education and play-way method of learning process for better foundation of the young children. This process worked-out well in the districts of Vellore, Erode, Kanchipuram, Thiruannamalai in Tamilnadu, Chittoor, Nellore, Prakasam in Andhra Pradesh, Waynad and Kasargod in Kerala. Our network members are following this work with their regular programmes.

Training programme to NGOs on National ECCE policy:-

We have conducted training programmes and community level meetings on the National Early Childhood Care Education Policy at Thiruannamalai on 28-29th October 2013 and on 23th November 2013 at Chengam and 31st January 2014 at Chennai in which over 180 people participated and discussed the importance of the ECCE policy. On behalf of the FSD organisation, we talked about the mother-tongue based multi-lingual education (MTMLE) strategy for the stronger and comfortable method for all children to continue and understand education. During the meeting we talked about the process and success of the national policy. After a long period of neglect, India promises to devote attention to the issue of preparing all children for primary schooling and creating better opportunity for MTMLE education. The mother-tongue based multi-lingual education is a chance to promote cultural diversity, to eliminate social discrimination and to achieve educational, economic and development equality in all aspects. The National Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) policy aims to end the “current laissez faire situation” that has led to the mushrooming of expensive crèches, play schools, nursery schools and so on that adhere to no particular standard. On the other hand, there is the major public program, the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) with a national footprint, but patchy outcomes. Policies are only as good as the institutional arrangements they make and the devices that they employ to bring about compliance. The ECCE policy talks of covering 158.7 million children in the 0 to 6 year age group, a category that has traditionally fallen through the cracks when it comes to resource support. We also need to ask all states to prepare their action plan for effective implementation of the ECCE. Also the need to look at the allocation of funds carefully by the central and states, and prevent profit-seeking actors from skimming off what is meant to create better anganwadi centres, provide standard materials for mother-tongue based multi-lingual education with a play-based curriculum and good nutrition. If we involve private partners and we must aim to achieve universal access, equity and inclusion approach.

During the discussion, we also talked about the FSD activity steps and continue discussion between the Ministry of Women and Child Development and with other ministry including Tribal Affairs, Educational Development on the ECCE policy. Now we need to implement the ECCE framework that will work smoothly with accountability. We also encouraged community leaders to monitor the performance of the ICDS centers and nutrition standards and activities of pre-school education. The positive elements of the policy is promotion of MTMLE and opportunity for prioritising mother tongue / scope for easy language which spoken at home, increasing space to learn tribal language, state language, oral Hindi and oral English and so on. In this process, we also need to assert the right of the child to care and nutrition and community participation. This meeting helped the participants to involve in gram-shabas meetings and to activate all Anganwadi centers to function effectively.