Nutrition Awareness Camp for Tribal Populations

 

The Tribal Clinic set up by HERD Foundation at Pauni undertakes regular health awareness programmes as part of its mandated activities to create healthier communities settled here. We systematically take on health camps to popularize preventive measures by organizing health awareness programs on issues related to health and hygiene. While last fortnight we undertook educating about diarrhea, this fortnight focused on nutritional awareness. Our team has been working for past three years in the region and the surrounding villages are familiar with the scheduled programmes of which they are informed in advance.

It is largely women patients who get involved as they are well acquainted with the medical team and they become willing participants in these awareness programmes. Such events teach them to take better care of their children and families. The tribal women are appropriate messengers to carry back the lessons to implement them in their daily lives. It leads them to take informed care of children, aging parents, and community members. These health camps are organized at the Tribal Clinic and last week the nutrition awareness camp drew nearly 60 women to the event.

Information about events gets circulated well in advance and the nutritive recipe competition was publicized to bring in more participants to the health awareness camp. The camp was organized for the benefit of the community women to coincide with the medical team’s health examination scheduled visit to the Tribal Clinic. It is when the team goes out for providing medical assistance thrice a week to this location, that they also plan and conduct activities to ensure inclusive reach for need of health awareness programs for the benefit of the people living here.

On September 8, 2017 the camp was organized with the aim to improve the nutritional status of the populations and especially targeted the tribal families. The food-preparation based nutrition approach was undertaken to create nutrition awareness to enhance consumption of nutritionally rich fruits, vegetables and ingredients. The team members made a comprehensive presentation to promote and emphasize on the importance of dietary variety in order to improve the nutritional quality of their diet and to increase knowledge and education on food preparation.

The team successfully created an environment in which the women became engrossed in learning how to add sufficient variety in their eating habits through locally available, affordable fruits, vegetables and ingredients that would add to their nutritional intake. This kind of participatory nutrition education for the women actually helped in inspiring them to learn new ways for consumption of nutritionally rich food.

Knowledge about alternate food preparation was shared prolifically. The nutrition-rich food competition announced earlier had the women bring in dishes they had prepared. Prizes were given after tasting and judging of dishes. This was done to encourage them to prepare innovative nutritious food in their households that will increase consumption of new recipes. The tribal women felt benefitted in being imparted necessary knowledge and skills to prepare and consume nutrition rich foods that they would add to their diet.

It turned out to be a wonderful effort by the medical team to raise awareness as well as to promote strategies for achieving nutrition security and enhance diversified food habits among these tribal families. These communities after all suffer from micronutrient malnutrition and the team assisted in offering solutions to address the problems. It was a wonderful participatory gathering that taught them to understand the need to learn about importance of nutrition and know of recipes using seasonal vegetables, fruits and condiments.

HERD Foundation hopes the nutrition awareness programme at the community level will promote increased consumption of nutrient rich foods. The health camp attracted the rural poor and disadvantaged women living here. The activities and advice provided by the team were to improve their awareness and skills in cooking to benefit their healthy eating habits. We know the team will be successful in bridging this critical knowledge link to educate home makers – mostly women to take better care of themselves, their children and families.

Deolapar Medical Camp – De-addiction/HIV AIDS Awareness

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Shri Arvind Raghuvanshi PSI, Nagpur Rural & Dr Amol Deshmukh At Deolapar Medical Camp

The medical camp organized at Deolapar on Tuesday, July 8th, 2014 was a true partnership between a state and civil society entity. Deolapar is a small town in the Nagpur district in Nagpur division of Vidarbha region of Maharashtra. Nagpur Rural Police and Herd Foundation partnered for an effective and efficient service health care delivery camp. Perhaps for the first time two distinctive players went ahead in a combined manner to provide assistance to ordinary rural people by following a coherent strategy to address important health issues like HIV/AIDS and de-addiction.

Once the formal programme was over, the open precincts of the Deolapar Police station became the venue for the health check up camp where nearly 40 medical staff from Lata Mangeshkar Hospital, Nagpur arranged an open air hospital set-up. The doctors began check-ups of the over 300 patients – men, women and children who lined up and the para-medic staff and sisters were soon busy proceeding for dispensing medicines accordingly. Nearly half the patient lineup included teenage boys and girls from schools who had been invited, as also more visitors from nearby villages.

HERD Foundation responded in a meaningfully manner with Dr Amol Deshmukh reaching out to the Government missive with a sense of responsibility keeping in mind our given role in the community. HERD Foundation continues to pursue the shared vision and common goals of social services in these areas and this was a great moment to hold hand with the Police Department for social development. The kind of affiliation that emerged in the course of the health care camp will go a long way in development of other inter-related programmes in the future.

One corner of the courtyard was reserved for extending information to truck drivers who had been invited. Specialist doctors explained the incidence, causes and prevention of HIV/AIDS to the at-a-time 30-35 adult group of people who sat at the meeting. Incidentally Deolapar sits right on the main road on the Highway and is surrounded by well known tourists spots and tourist resorts. It is located on the Maharashtra – Madhya Pradesh border on National Highway 7 which is the arterial road running from Uttar Pradesh to Tamil Nadu. It was the perfect spot to develop public awareness and education on HIV prevention, treatment and care.

The hands-on diabetes tests being conducted at the camp to give instant blood sugar readings was attracting adults to the counter where the examinations were being done. A few cases of severely escalated blood sugar readings of villagers were referred to the Hospital in Nagpur for further management of the disease. These people were also counseled for the future course of action to be taken. All the police personnel at the station also had their blood tests done to check for diabetic condition.

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School Children and Youth Registration Prior to Check-ups