Swasthya Swaraj is a secular, not-for-profit, organization working towards making health a reality for the poorest and unreached. We focus on Tribal Health. Comprehensive community health programme is our approach with many innovative programmes.
Gaon Swasthya poshan Ghar (GSPG)
GSPG/Village health & nutrition center is an innovation by Swasthya Swaraj to address the high load of preventable communicable diseases and undernutrition in remote, hard-to-reach locations. It is visualized as a tribal area- specific and tribal-friendly mini Health & Wellness centers targeting the vulnerable tribal population of about 1000-1500 in each location.
The Infrastructure is simple and closer to people. GSPG is run by resident tribal staff- trained, competent senior nurse and two community nurses. It focuses on curative services and preventive measures and active health promotion measures in the community. Community-based management of SAM and MAM children and short-stay management of uncomplicated SAM children in the center is part of GSPG. Nutrition education for mothers, adolescent girls, and school children is an integral part of the GSPG.
GSPG is piloted in Silet GP from August 2021 for a population of 2000. It is being scaled to two other locations.
Health and Nutrition Promoting School (HNPS)
Primary healthcare and primary education is crucial for the development and empowerment of any community. Through the HNPS programme we hope to make the schools the nodal point for health education and make the children as the change agents in the community. We work with 14 government schools in the Kerpai and Silet Gram Panchayat. Most of these schools are mostly dysfunctional with extremely poor Attendance.
14 Shiksha Sathis from the local communities has been trained as educators in these schools. Swasthya Swaraj provides them with regular training, creative methods of teaching, provide teaching-learning materials and resources. We provide them handholding support throughout the year to encourage the children to use agriculture, nutrition, and health as media of education. Swasthya Swaraj doctors and nurses do the school health check-up periodically and the findings are also used as a medium of education. These schools develop school nutrition gardens and nutrition education for the community.
Improving access to maternal healthcare
Subnational mapping of neonatal and under-five mortality in India from 2000- 2017 revealed that Child and maternal malnutrition was the main risk factor, contributing to 68·2% (65·8–70·7) of under-5 deaths and 83·0% (80·6–85·0) of neonatal deaths in India in 2017. NFHS 5 showed that tribal communities have the highest load of undernutrition, though child mortality has come down. The prevalence of underweight children, stunting, and wasting are much higher in tribal children. In the 79 project villages, the stunting of under-five children is 68% and underweight 53% and wasting 26%. Surely this needs aggressive action.
Swasthya Swaraj is trying to strengthen the Govt programme of ICDS in the tribal hamlets where the children need this programme more than anywhere else. A cadre of Shishu sathis from the community ( one from each village and hamlet) is trained by Swasthya Swaraj to spearhead this nutrition improvement and also the preschool education for the intellectual stimulation that these children need badly.
The Shishu sathis who are the informal preschool teachers engage the children for two hours daily and supervise the hamlet nutrition programme( making the hot cooked meal of ICDS prog) available to these deprived children along with Mothers’ committee members. This programme also visualizes working in collaboration with Anganwadi workers.
School of Community Health Science & Practice
Initiated by Swasthya Swaraj in 2018 in Kaniguma village trains educated tribal girls as middle-level health workers ( Diploma in community health practice). This programme conducted in a tribal setting is affiliated with Centurion University of Technology & Management (CUTM) Bhubaneswar. This cadre of competent tribal health workers after completion of the studies work in tribal areas where none else would go and work for their people.