Empowerment, Health & Sexuality Amongst Adolescents (EHSAS)

Adolescent Health and Empowerment

Goal

To empower young girls and boys (11-24 years) with the knowledge and capacity to make informed choices about their health and well being.

Objectives

  • To increase health awareness and positive health behaviours through peer group learning sessions, life skills education and community engagement.
  • To enable economic empowerment through vocational training.
  • To create adolescent advocates in the community.
  • To ensure continued support through formation of parent groups and follow up beyond the program.

How we work

The program covers 5500 boys and girls in the age group 11 to 24 years across 3 municipal wards through the Adolescents Gaining Ground (AGG) project and two community resource centers called Arogyamitra Kendras. The program is delivered by trained facilitators who are women from the same communities as the beneficiaries. The program is located across the vulnerable communities of Dharavi, Ghatkopar, Vikhroli and Kandivali.

Intervention Approach / Design / Methodology

The program takes a comprehensive approach and intervention includes :

  • Classroom based sessions on health and life skills education.
  • Beyond the classroom sessions : field visits to the local Health Post, market, and police station, community events using art, theatre / street plays and sports activities.
  • Vocational training : Computer literacy, Spoken English, Beautician training, Mobile repair, Nurse aide course, Mehendi class and Stitching.
  • Monthly mothers / parent group meetings.
  • Alumni meetings for follow up.

Evaluation is done through pre and post surveys, and a six-month retention survey, and case stories documenting behavioral change. Quality of vocational training classes is monitored by the team on a regular basis.

Uniqueness of the Program

The program is unique in working equally with boys and has received an overwhelming response from the community. The model is highly replicable and has allowed fast expansion and increased beneficiary coverage. Partnerships with local vendors, corporate and private schools has lent itself to innovative volunteering opportunities and exchange programs.

Achievements

  • Scaled up the program coverage from 800 to 5500 beneficiaries per year and expanded from one municipal ward to three.
  • Delivered one of the program's key beliefs that community empowerment and female empowerment is achievable in real terms only if we equally work to empower boys who are going to be future husbands, fathers, fathers in law and law abiding citizens.
  • Trained over 45 community women as facilitators.

Read our "Stories of Change"