on the details of
Mahan Seva Sansthan, formed in 1989 started working with the tribal families of 20 villages spread over 4 Panchayats. Initially the focus of intervention was to address discrimination and deprivation through strengthening of the education system. Later with broadening of perspective and experience, the organization focused more on community mobilization, working towards the rights of children and for the rights of displaced communities. The operational area of Mahan is now spread over 8 Panchayats, covering 60 villages in Jhadol block and 5 villages in Kotra block. Through all its intervention, the organization now reaches out to approximately 6000 families and covers approximately 42000 population.
The project area has villages, predominantly inhabited by tribal communities (almost 66%). Most of the tribal families are involved in the collection of minor forest products and their sale in the local markets. There are 6200 children residing in the target area who are deprived of quality education and health services they deserve. Discriminatory social practices deprive women of an equal platform and opportunities. Infant mortality rate is an alarming issue in the villages, main reason being malnutrition, pneumonia and vomiting cum dehydration. Child marriage is prevalent in the area. Of the total child population, around 60% children have early marriages. The first pregnancy is between the ages of 16-18 years, which is a major reason of infant mortality. Sex determination tests and termination are also becoming common. Problem of potable water also persists in the area. There are villages where approximately 50 families are using one hand pump.
As compared to the geographical spread of the area, there are only a few number of ICDS centres. Anganwadi workers find it hard to think beyond distributing supplementary nutrition and supporting the ANM on immunization services.
- Ensuring access to elementary education.
- Ensuring formation and active participation of School Management Committee (SMC) in managing education programs.
- Ensuring birth registrations for all new born.
- Establishing linkage of disabled children with relevant government schemes.
- Reduce child trafficking by actively liaisoning with the law enforcement agencies.
- Organize exposures / interactions and form thematic theatre groups to build knowledge.
Review and Impact
Mahan has built up its strength in child centric issues in the rights based approach and linking it to larger issues like right to health and education. More than 90% of the deliveries took lace in the hospital and other institutions with not a single reported case of maternal death in the project area. This could not have been possible without a community which isnot sensitized and aware about the importance of safe delivery and benefits of Janani Surakshya Yojna. Mahan has been able to mobilize communities to provide better facilities in the health institutions. The constant pressure over Anganwadi and the PRI led to 100% registration of all the reported new births and increase in issuance of birth registration certificates. The organization playeda facilitating role in formation of the School Management Committee (SMC) in the schools of the project area.
Some of their major achievements include:
- Birth registration certificate issued to 130 children.
- 219 children got caste certificate during the review period.
- 1187 children covered under complete immunization.
- All the 174 drop out children was also re enrolled in the schools.
- Free & compulsory elementary education ensured to 1774 children (6 to 14 years) in the 22 schools in intervention villages.
- 65 children were rescued during migration from their own village to join the labor force.
- 20 Bal Samuh and five Bal Panchayats (children's groups) were formed in the project interventions villages.
- Toilet has been sanctioned for three schools
- Total of 505 bank accounts opened by the children of different children's groups which are run by the children themselves.
- Ensuring better health facilities and enhance quality nutrition at roject villages through activation of Primary Health Centres (PHCs).
- Raising the issue of irregular immunisation process with the Panchayat health committee and block and district level officials.
- Ensuring quality education for children in between 6 to 18 years of age with active involvement of the community, SMC and Panchayat Raj Institutions (PRI)
- Pressurizing the administration for the issuance of death certificates with the reasons of deaths.
- Bal Panchayat members to prepare charter of demand for effective implementation of the right to education norms and share the same with community, SMC members, Panchayat, concerned authorities.
- Protection of children from all forms of exploitation at family, community and village level through linkages with govt. schemes and legal system.
- Liaison with other networks at the regional, state and national level to ensure the protection children's rights.
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