A new book which graphically maps the health choices and challenges before women in the isolated island communities on the Brahmaputra river in Assam was released on Friday. Authored by Chandana Bora and Dr CR Hira the book titled ‘Women and Reproductive Health’ looks at the health concerns facing by women in the char/ sapori (island in Assamese) areas.
The book is based on a family planning intervention that addressed gender exclusion in nine districts, conducted by C-NES.
As a result of the project spread over seven years in districts as disparate as Dibrugarh and Dhubri, Barpeta and Sonitpur, family planning has picked up significantly in several minority pockets as well as those inhabited by general caste groups.
‘Women have been the leaders of this change because they know how badly their lives are impacted by multiple pregnancies and deliveries,’ said Hazarika of C-NES. This point was underscored by Dr Muthreja as well as senior officials, health professionals and activists, speaking of the need for women’s empowerment and entitlement.
C-NES’ initiative on health care by tapping local human resources needed to be sustained and expanded, said several officials included Dr. Bamin Tada, director of the centrally supported RRC in Guwahati.
Sameer Sinha, Assam’s health commissioner, made a presentation on a proposed Initiative by the Govt of Assam to improve health conditions in the tea gardens.
The workshop, attended by health professionals, activists, field workers, media and others looked at strategies to make advocacy and behavior change sustainable in difficult to reach areas.