Adolescent Health and Empowerment
To empower young girls and boys (11-24 years) with the knowledge and capacity to
make informed choices about their health and well being.
- 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
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
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
- 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.
Our data from 1530 adolescents who have completed our program in 2013 shows a steady
and significant improvement in knowledge and reported behaviours between the time
beneficiaries entered SNEHA's program and graduated from it. Some key impact data
is presented below :
- 34% and 41% improvement in the comprehensive knowledge of common illnesses like
T.B. and malaria respectively
- 22% improvement in the knowledge of tobacco related illnesses.
- 33% and 35% improvement in the understanding of the causes and prevention of anemia
- 46% improvement among girls in the knowledge of puberty in males and 39% improvement
in the knowledge of the male reproductive system.
- 67% of girls understood that menstruation is normal in the post test survey, a 27%
improvement from the baseline. 57% were able to report ways to maintain menstrual
hygiene in the post test survey.
- 41% improvement in awareness of HIV/AIDS; 39% improvement in knowledge of modes
of transmission and prevention. 17% improvement in knowledge of where one can get
tested and treated.
- 69% beneficiaries were aware of the legal age of marriage for girls and boys in
India, a 36% improvement from the baseline.
- 74% beneficiaries understood the different forms of violence, a 54% improvement
from the baseline. 58% knew the different ways of preventing and addressing violence.
- Over half the beneficiaries reported positive gender attitudes towards education,
freedom and contribution to housework at the time of enrolment and showed a 20%
improvement at graduation.
- 78% of beneficiaries reported that the knowledge and experience gained would be
useful for their lives and future. Over 70% said they shared the information with
their parents and friends and advocated the benefits of such a program to other
adolescents in their communities.
To increase the contraceptive prevalence rate for modern methods of family planning
and reduce the unmet need for family planning by enabling women to make informed
choices about spacing and limiting their families.
- To increase the contraceptive prevalence rate through a peer educator support base.
- To improve male participation and support for the women in decisions on family planning.
- To strengthen municipal services for family planning.
How we work
The program covers over 2500 married women in the reproductive age (15 - 49 years)
and 500 married men in Rajiv Gandhi Nagar, Dharavi.
Workshops are conducted with the local Health Post to improve community outreach
Intervention Approach / Design / Methodology
- The program follows a peer educator model where SNEHA
mobilizes and trains women from the community who deliver the intervention at three
- Individual Level : Home based intervention, one on one need based
counselling, community based distribution of contraceptives, referral for IUD, injectables
and sterilization follow up.
- Group level : Women's group meetings once a fortnight addressing
family planning and broader issues of women's reproductive health.
- Community level : Participatory events and campaigns.
- Men's group meetings are conducted to discuss issues on family planning, reproductive
health and supporting women.
- Training and workshops with Pilla Bunglow Health Post are conducted to improve service
- SNEHA works in partnership with Family Planning Association of India for technical
support and supply of contraceptives.
Increase in contraceptive prevalence rate from 19% to 40% from the time the project
began in 2010.
- 100% coverage of married women in the community by peer educators through home based
interventions every month.
- Fortnightly group meetings conducted in the community with consistent membership.
- Mobilization of over 100 men from the community to participate in men's group meetings
and community events.
- Six workshops with Pilla Bungalow health post and submission of proposal to MCGM
for partnership on improving quality of family planning services in Municipal health
- Qualitative study with men to study their attitudes and use of family planning methods.
Read our "Stories of Change"