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Building Bridges Programme

Addressing the health concerns of women and children by integrating a Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (RMNCH) health care model along with preventable Communicable and Non - Communicable diseases in the vulnerable urban informal settlements.

Bhiwandi (Thane)

Our Work

Intensive intervention on Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCH)

A survey done in 2014 by our Monitoring and Evaluation team revealed that most of the population in Bhiwandi-Nizampur Municipal Corporation (BNMC) consisted of migrants who had poor awareness in terms of availability of health services, family planning, immunisation and benefits of institutional delivery. An endline survey done in 2019 revealed that there was a high incidence of home deliveries (28%), low rate of early registration of pregnancy (67%) and only 45% of eligible couples practiced some sort of contraception.

These indicators necessitated a need for interventions through varied strategies to increase awareness, change behaviours and link the communities to the services provided by the Public Health Systems.

The projects on Non-Communicable diseases and TB are beginning in 2022.

Intensive intervention on RMNCH

We have created a protocolised intervention framework for effective identification, referral and follow-up of children with infectious diseases, health promotion education, counselling and home visits of married women in reproductive age, pregnant and lactating women and children between 0 to 6 years in the targeted households.

Partnership with Public Health Systems and ICDS

We built a robust partnership with public health systems, ICDS, healthcare providers including the frontline workers to improve service delivery through training, capacity building, data sharing and advocacy across Health Posts, Secondary and Tertiary Hospitals and Anganwadis.

Community Engagement for Behaviour Change

We spread awareness with the help of IEC materials and other communication tools used while organising community events like campaigns, rallies, corner and group meetings of community volunteers who then support the public frontline workers like ASHAs and Anganwadi sevikas for door-to-door visits in the area.

Referrals and Networking

While our focus remains on maternal and child health and nutrition, we understand that in urban informal settlements the issues are complex and inter-linked to many peripheral problems. Hence, we connect our communities to Government schemes which can help them in accessing basic services like Public Distribution System(PDS) for rations to provide food security and universal health coverage scheme Ayushman Bharat.

Reach and Impact


Households reached


of married women in reproductive age were using modern method of contraception for family planning


of pregnant women had registered in first trimester (early registration) for antenatal care services

Notes from the Field
Nurturing a mother for a healthier future!

Knowledge and support system go a long way in enabling a mother to face the challenges during pregnancy and after the birth of the child. Our team traverses that extra mile to ensure every woman and child in vulnerable and marginalised communities receive the care they need!

During one of the routine home visits, SNEHA’s Community Organiser (CO) met Shamim Ansari*, who shared that she was two months into her pregnancy and was having difficulty consuming food due to intense nausea. First, Shamim was registered at the Indira Gandhi Hospital for antenatal care.

The CO continued the follow-ups and closely monitored her health guiding her to eat nutritious food and take adequate rest. Shamim delivered a baby weighing 2.0 kgs at the Hospital.

During the postnatal visit, the team motivated Shamim to weigh the baby every week to monitor the weight and counseled her to breastfeed and give kangaroo mother care, to keep the baby warm. The team kept following up till the child eventually reached the weight of 2.5 kilograms. As the saying goes: ‘It takes a village to raise a child’!

*Name changed


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