Tzedek has approved the 2nd phase project by providing an another opportunity to SAVE Trust towards promotion of new batch of 35 deprived slum women in various small vending for the period 2014 and 2015. The lessons we gained from the previous project in Phase-1 would be utilized. 18 women availed an amount from Rs. 6,000/- to 12,000/- and the project was implemented from the month of June, 2014. The lessons we gained from the previous project in Phase-1, was carefully utilized for the success of this project with 35 deprived women. The uniqueness of the people centered project will be sensitized among the beneficiaries during trainings. The stake holders like SHG leaders and volunteers have been empowered to monitor the micro business and counsel the beneficiaries. Through visits to their homes and to their business spots the Project Coordinator, Project Director and SHG leaders are motivating them to run their vending without any stagnation. The success and failures are discussed in review meetings and relevant solutions arrived at.
Women in Development:
The project serves the women in urban slums and rural areas for the past 8 years. It strives to improve the socio-economic condition of the target population; through promotion of SHGs. Presently we have 50 SHGs, which are active and able to get loans from bank. Soon we intend to merge them with the federations. We also provide the knowledge for women on various issues that concern them, such as gender problems, RTI, STI and HIV and AIDS and leadership qualities. The project is beneficial especially to the slum population, which is vulnerable to all these health problems and are not empowered enough to protect themselves. Due to the project the women have benefited in every way. Through the savings they are able to enhance their economic conditions. Some of the benefits that were hitherto not given to them are now made available to them. The knowledge on various gender issues have helped them to solve some of the problems or cope with them. The results of the evaluation showed that the project has achieved the objectives aimed at. The women were able to get extra income, and have improved lifestyles, educate their children and also raise their voices against evils of alcoholism and assert their rights.
Young Women Groups (YWGs) for Human Rights Advocacy in Chennai slums - Supported By - Haëlla, Netherlands – 2014 – 2015:The project aims to enhance the ability of 120 deprived young women during one year, through capacity building and human rights advocacy to ensure significant improvement in housing rights, peace and harmony among slums in Chennai. TB Intervention Program in Chennai District under REACH Axshya Project- Supported By- REACH, Chennai: Under this project we have carried out many interventions like GKS awareness meetings, community meetings, mass programs, referral services and sputum collection and also collaboration with staff and stake holders working in Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program (RNTCP), a Government Program. In association with doctors, counselors and other health care providers we refer TB symptomatic persons to the Corporation Hospitals, health posts, Government Hospitals exclusively working for TB. Micro Insurance Policy- Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) , Chennai Main Branch: SAVE Trust is one of the authorized promoters of Micro Insurance policies in Life Insurance Corporation of India. We have organized many Orientation programs on the benefits of Micro Insurance. The marginalized people especially women of Self Help Groups and small venders are motivated to join in the scheme and more than 100 benefited.
TB Intervention Program: Since 2009, SAVE Trust is one of the partner NGOs in Resource Group for Education and Advocacy for Community Health (REACH) working for the eradication of Tuberculosis. SAVE Trust took this opportunity to impart the scientific facts and the preventive aspects to the community in the target areas. We have conducted many awareness programs for the benefit of women, youth and students. During this period more than 100 TB symptomatic persons were referred to Government Hospitals for counseling and sputum tests. During this period, two special trainings were conducted in Corporation Medical Centers in North Chennai for TB patients imparting knowledge on the Rights and Responsibilities in which, around 100 patients benefited.
World AIDS Day Awareness Campaign: In collaboration with REACH, on 6th December, 2013 awareness campaign was organized in Perambur, Chennai. Ms. Nalini, District Coordinator, REACH and Mr. S.Baskar addressed to the participants on HIV and AIDS and motivated them to come forward to serve the people suffering from AIDS. After the meeting, a street campaign was launched with the distribution of pamphlets consisting of awareness message on HIV and AIDS. Totally 75 women participated and took an oath to work jointly to eliminate social discriminations against PLWHA.
World TB Day Door to Door Awareness Campaign: An awareness meeting was organized by SAVE Trust in collaboration with REACH on 15th March, 2014 in Perambur, Chennai. To create a greater impact among the hut dwellers the awareness program was conducted by Ms. Nalini, District Coordinator, Mr. Jayaraj, Counselor and Mr. S.Baskar. They addressed the participants on TB and the availability of testing and treatment facilities in Government Hospitals and Corporation Hospitals and Health Posts in Chennai, and also emphasized upon early diagnosis, treatment and follow up and that a greater awareness is needed among community. The volunteers of SAVE Trust were appreciated by the invitees for their involvement in educating the public. 60 women volunteers took a pledge to participate in the RNTCP to control TB.
SHG Women, rural women, senior citizens, people with HIV (PLWHIV), and children were covered under this project. The objectives of the project were to ensure improved socio-economic condition of rural and urban population, provide assistance to obtain benefits from government, help to solve problems of slum and rural people with the government, enhancing the well-being of children, PLWHIV and senior citizens. While we focused on the welfare of the people by providing awareness through SHGs, for the children, the PLHIV we provided assistance in various ways. We were able to refer many children for treatment of many illnesses, especially in the slum areas, to the nearest health posts. We provided nutrition packets to people living with HIV, during the recent World AIDS Day program. The project helped to increase the awareness on environment protection and the devastating effects of global warming. During the project, we were able to discern marked increase in their knowledge. The problems of the evicted slum people were taken up with the government. Many women start to run small eateries as micro enterprises. We provided nutrition support to 15 children and elders living with HIV. Emergency relief work was initiated during the fire accidents in Vyasarpadi, Pulianthope and Perambur with the distribution of food, clothes and education and school education materials to students.
Distribution of Gifts & Educational Materials: We successfully organised the children's get-together function and distributed the toys and gifts to our children at our Perambur office on 18th February 2016. 30 children from four areas of the classes from 1st to 5th were participated and collected the gifts. They all enjoyed and thanked the children of Swaminaryan School, London and our esteemed Wings of Hope, UK for their kind gifts. The leaders of the slums and our volunteers have felicitated the children and expressed their gratitude for the support of Wings of Hope.
Supporting of Educational Materials and School Uniforms: We distributed school uniforms, School Bags and education materials like Exam pad, Stationery with the help of The Wings of Hope, UK for 45 young girl children of our working slum on 5th March 2016. School fees are supported for the 15 needy children in the Slums of North Chennai.
Flood Response – Relief & Rehabilitation: Almost all the slums in the North and the South had gone down to skip - dip water. Belongings such as utensils, cots, mats, dresses, books and other important documents like ration cards, voter ID and certificates were washed away by the uncontrolled floods in December 2015. In association with educational institutions, welfare associations, small companies, temples and churches, our staff and volunteers prepared, collected and distributed the essential commodities like food, biscuit pockets, drinking water, milk, medicines, cloths and other useful things to the slum people. School kits were also distributed to the flood affected slum children with the help of TATA Group of Companies and Staff of KELVION (GEA BTTQ); as well as relief kits donated by children’s of Swami Narayan School, UK through Wings of Hope, UK.
Micro Credit Support to Deprived Slum Women SHG members by “Tzedek”, UK: Phase-1 During the project year 2013-2014, Tzedek-UK supported a micro credit project in which 25 selected SHG women emerged as successful entrepreneurs. Training on entrepreneurial skills was imparted and the project women availed seed money loan from Rs.5, 000/ to Rs. 12,000/ for 5 different trades. Now they are continuing their small vending with savings and this was appreciated by Ms. Hannah Gaventa, Education Director, Tzedek and Mrs. Rajni Sriram, the Co-Founder, Wings of Hope, during their visit to the project in SAVE Trust in October, 2013.
Success Stories: Mrs. Kothai is an enthusiastic woman among our beneficiaries. She is living in a rented house with her daughter. Kothai is very bold and good in communication. She is doing her fish vending along with her husband. Kothai now says that she has no worry regarding investment for her business, because the Seed Money support has made a radical difference in her life! Before that she depended on private money lenders and had to repay the loan with huge interest. But now she is living a peaceful life without any threat from them. Her husband is very supportive to her and sometimes he would carry fish on his bicycle and sell on the streets in nearby areas.
Alternate Livelihood Project for Female Sex Workers (FSWs) from “1% Club”, Netherlands to SAVE Trust: The human rights of FSWs are routinely abused by middle men and muscle men. The right to life, safety, free speech, political action and access to information and basic health and education services are denied. Poverty, gender inequality, inadequate education and lack of economically viable job options contribute to the reason to enter into sex work. To address the issue of FSWs, we initiated a project for the promotion of alternate livelihood opportunity to them in the Year, 2013. We approached “1 % Club”, Netherlands, a funding promoter with a project for 50 FSWs. Since mobilized a limited funds, and it was a pilot project to SAVE Trust, we disbursed the grant to only 3 FSWs for their own alternate small vending like selling garments, snacks. Now they are doing the trades well and through these businesses we found some impacts in their daily lives. Now they are successfully doing their vending and have slowly started to reduce clients and having increased awareness on health seeking behavior. The women and their children are also participating in all the interventions and programs of SAVE Trust and creating an acceptance on them among the other women and children. During the project promotion work, Ms. Maria Cuijpers was delegated as the “Project Coach” to SAVE Trust by “1 % Club”.
Religious Harmony among Slum Youth:
Religious Harmony: “Building Bridges of Understanding in a Slum Community” and the project has received very good impact from the slum youth and appreciation from Slum leaders. We had organized programs for the youth. Besides, we have arranged training and conference for the selected young people. We started this project from January 2016 with the support of Lisle International, USA.
Residential Training on Social Development and Youth Participation:
Two day residential training on religious harmony and life-skill for the forty selected slum girls and boys was organized on 21st and 22nd May 2016 at Sagayathottam, Vellore DT. Tamil Nadu, a college for agriculture runs by Don Bosco Institution. Mr. R.Sagayanathan, Mr.M.Elangovan, Mr.V.Sundaresan and Mr.E.Poovendhan were the recourse persons. They covered the topics on religious harmony, leadership, cultural activities, personality development and social issues & awareness. Cultural troop was formed and it was named as “Pudhiya Muzhakkam” (New Slogan) by the troop members. They have decided to conduct regular meetings to discuss on the various slum issues related to cooperation among slum communities and also to create awareness on religious harmony, mental health and need for youth solidarity through cultural activities, which is the most effective medium of communication.
Youth conference was organized on 25.08.2016 at a community hall, Perambur. More than 200 youth from Ponniamman Street, Rajiv Gandhi Nagar, SSPuram B Block, Chetpet, Kannikapuram, VOC Nagar, SM Colony, Ganesapuram and Salaimanagar were participated. Mr.S.Baskar, Project Director spoke on the importance of the project for the promotion no religious harmony among slum youth. The youth shared on the issues of their respective slums and their commitment in solving the existing issues. Rev. Ebenezer Kirubakaran, a Priest cum Social Activist, Mr. Mathivanan; Trainer cum Consultant, Mr.Sampath Raman; leader of a Religious Group and slum leaders were presented and spoke on the need of youth volunteerism and the importance of religious harmony. IEC materials on human rights, leadership skills and advocacy have been distributed to the youth and cultural programs on slum issues were staged by the youth. 30 youth representatives from 10 slums were selected for the representatives of Youth Alliance for Slum Development (YASD).
Capacity Building Training form the members of Youth Alliance for Slum development (YASD)
One day Capacity Building Training was organized on 24.09.2016 at ICSA center, Egmore. The official inauguration of project was started with one day training program for 30 member’s youth of YASD. Mr.Mathivanan, Trainer cum Consultant facilitated the training on humanism, religious harmony, soft skills and advocacy skills. He trained then youth on mapping of issues in the slums. He added that youth should come forward to address the issues of the slums in proper ways, which gives a solution. He also stressed that the youth boys and girls should respect each other and to take initiative to include new members in this process. Then the office bearers of Youth Alliance for Slum Development were elected by its members.