on the details of
In 1989, the project holder, Mr. Sathaiah, Secretary of RWDS organized Palmyra workers in Ramnad district into the Devipattinam Panai Thozhilalr Sangam. In 1990, Palmyra workers development society (PWDS) extended its operations into Ramnad District, with establishment of AIRD (Association of Integrated Rural Development). In 2007 RWDS was formed with a view to bring a change in the life of the Palmyra workers in 4 districts – Ramnad, Kanyakumari, Thoothukudi and Thirunelveli. CRY started supporting RWDS since 2008. The goal of RWDS is to organize the Palmyra workers and facilitate them to campaign for asserting their rights over livelihood, to ensure education and health facilities for Palmyra workers’ children at their hamlets and to ensure to control over common property resources. RWDS started addressing CR issues in 90 villages through strong community mobilization. From 2009 Sept, Mr. T.R. Chandran, a well known rights based NGO leader is the president of the board. Mr. Sathaiah guides and monitors the entire team and their work.
RWDS’s operational villages comes under Kadaladi, Thiruppulani and Mandapam Panchayat Unions in which Palmyra workers are thickly populated. Palmyra trees are the major source of livelihood in Ramnad, besides fishing. They get comparatively low price for their products like jaggery; litter of toddy leaves, palm syrup, palm sugar etc. These products need more number of labors hence there is high risk of using children in work.. From the total Palmyra workers 80% to 90% do not have any land holdings of their own. They take Palmyra trees either on lease or Varam (rental) basis from the tree owners. The total number of children of 0-18 years in 52 villages is 9212. The mojar child rights issues include malnutrition in rampant rate, non availability of early childhood education to children, lack of infrastructure facilities, and much distance of ICDS centres from hamlets and increasing dropouts and child labours in the area.
- To improve access and quality of early childhood development services for the children of Palmyrah community
- To improve access to schools and ensure protective environment to children’s health and education
- To bring child labourers out of workforce and enroll them into schools
- To identify and analyse the issues of children at migrated families and to plan strategies to prevent migration of families
- Improve access to primary and high school education, improved retention rate and reduce drop out among high school children to ensure continuing education
- Mobilize communities/village Sangams to demand and implement child welfare schemes/community development schemes of the Welfare Board through participation and monitoring of government schemes
2013 Review & Impact
RWDS addresses the root causes of CR issues among the Palmyra workers community. From 2009 onwards the partner organization intervention focused on 52 villages with children track record and these villages have been selected as more vulnerable to children such as high IMR (43%), non accessibility of ICDS and schools and number of child labor in high level health hazardous industries. The strong community mobilization is the core intervention strategy of RWDS. The CBO’s promoted by RWDS like palmyra workers sangam brought in desired impact that improved the mindset of community to address the child rights issues. The enrolment rate, retention, re enrolment of child labours, coverage of immunization, pre and postnatal care and the no instances of maternal mortality are factors prove the intervention purposeful and target oriented. Among CRY goals, Health accessibility, malnutrition issues, right to health issues, schools accessibility and child labour issues are being addressed very intensively.
- IMR registered as 43/1000, 10 infant death among of 231 new born babies during within 10 months
- 2303 (0-5years) children immunized, 170 Newborn Babies got birth Certificates
- 83 more children enrolled into ICDS centres, 780/1308 adolescent girls got additional nutrition
- 22 malnourished children (3-5) identified and referred to additional nutrition from ICDS centers, 1 child came out from SAM category into normal category
- 87 child labors (4.7%) rescued and reenrolled in schools and technical institutions
- 11 child labors collectives formed in 11 villages, 196 child labors are organized under these collectives
- 141 children got benefitted among this 92 girl students got welfare benefit from Palmyra workers welfare board during this year, 48 eligible children filed applications
- 88% enrollment ensured in 6-14 old children, 57% enrollment ensured in 15-18 old children
- 3 new children collectives formed, total 52 children’s collectives with 1051 members
2014 PlansIn this year the organization has plans to focus on the following areas:
- Reduction of Infant Mortality Rate to 30/1000.
- Regular monitoring of ANC and PNC education at village level. Monthly meeting of VHN & AWW to be ensured for ANC & PNC health education in 15 villages.
- There will be children enrolment drive in 38 Anganwadi and 1000 children will be at ICDS centers.
- Study will be conducted in 38 Anganwadies on infrastructure, and malnutrition status among 3-5 years children & Data to be updated in 26 sub centers and Issues will be escalated through press meet.
- There will be demand for new building for 12 rented & damaged ICDS buildings, for electricity and toilet facilities in 20 Anganwadis.
- Enrolment campaigns will be organized with the participation of local village level sangams and education dept.
- Data on migrated families will be collected with special focus on students and health of children + mothers. Findings would be released through press meet.
- 1500 Children in 70 children collectives would get opportunity to get space for participation in local events.
- The children of Children’s Collectives will monitor the children at schools, absentees and child marriages.
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