July 17nth 2019 was a special day for the SAM team in Amethi. We were graced with the presence of representatives from CII, who were keen on seeing the project intervention site and to better understand SAM’s way of triggering positive change in our communities.
The CII team who made the field visits were Mr. Sandipan Chakravorty, Chairman TATA Motors International Logistics Limited, Ms. Jayashree Sinha, Deputy Director CII- ITC Centre of Excellence, and Ms. Yogita from PFI Lucknow office. The team visited the Community Health Centre in Jamo block, Deegha Gopalpur village, and Tikari village of Bhetuwa block. The group took this opportunity to interact with Swasthya Sakhis, Arogya Sakhis, and Depot Holders and understand how local influencers and action can lead to significant health improvements in a community. A very interesting interaction also took place between the team and the women from the community who shared their success stories of contraceptive use.
One user from Deeghapur Gopalpur shared her moving story. She spoke about being married off at the young age of 17 and then quickly becoming a mother. She suffered through a difficult pregnancy because she was anemic and eventually gave birth to an underweight baby. She was going through a hard time when a volunteer from the SAM team approached her and informed her about the contraceptive basket of choices she could adopt. She chose to use an IUCD and is now happy with her decision to limit her family to just one child.
ASHA worker of Deeghapur Gopalpur shared how the support from SAM’s team of population stabilization program has been a huge support for her to mobilize women of reproductive age to adopt contraceptive methods.
After listening to inspiring life incidents and motivating songs performed by those attending the community meeting, Mr. Chakrovarty congratulated the entire team for their contribution to the betterment of their village. He applauded the women for taking a stance on keeping their families small and the SAM team for providing the information necessary to empower them with their reproductive choices. He went on to say our whole country requires many such champions of SAM to bring about a similar change in health scenario all across.
The field visit truly reflected the powers of community action. Women, who for several decades, had no access to reproductive choices were now at a place where they were not only adopting contraceptive methods but were also encouraging other women in their community to use a method of their choice.
This is truly the India that we all have been envisaging.