A Rapid need assessment conducted last week by SVK in 121 villages of these two districts, found that almost 65% of households are completely affected with their livelihood.There are around 938 pregnant mothers, 709 lactating mothers and 17746 person above 60 years of age and 1066 children/persons with disabilities present in these 121 villages who are mostly affected with not availing the support for their health, nutrition and basic amenities. Around 5900 children in the age group of 6 month to 3 year and 6000 plus children in the age group of 3 to 5 year are lacking from early childhood care and development facilities with close of ICDS centres. The District Medical Officer while discussing with the SVK team expressed his inability to avail sufficient masks and gloves to its health staff. 5852 girls in secondary schools lack the education but are also deprived of health and hygiene facilities due to the shut down. Almost 22000 children are confined indoors without recreational opportunity leading to their mental ailments also making them vulnerable to experience the violence in the families and possible abuses including gender based violence within the families. Apart from the local residents there are around 1587 migrants from Odisha and Jharkhand who are presently staying in congested habitations in several locations of the district without any support. They do not have food and neither are they getting any facilities from the local Government as they do not qualify for PDS by the State Government.
So far the Government is responding to the pandemic both in prevention and response activities. In terms of prevention state Government has started a door to door campaign by the ASHA workers and ANMs to educate the people to keep them safe from the virus, keeping the environment healthy and hygienic. SVK team is supporting the Government health workers in this mission. The state Government has so far provided 12 kilograms rice per head to the vulnerable families. The National Government has declared to support the families with Jan Dhan accounts with Rs 500/- per family and three gas cylinders free of cost in coming months. However these services are not yet provided. No other Non Government organisation so far intervened in these two districts.
A three tier response approach is needed from Government, Private Sector and the Non Government Organisations. To prevent the spread of the virus, raising awareness among the public is required to protect themselves from contracting the virus. Education on personal safety and hygiene including menstrual hygienic practice in schools and other institutions are utmost necessary. As the Government health department has already expressed their inability to provide sufficient masks and sanitizers, the NGOs and the Private Sectors need to play a major role in ensuring these facilities to the common public for arresting the spread of the virus.
The pregnant and lactating mothers do need sufficient nutrition for their as well as their children’s sound health. The toddlers and the preschooling age children require attention and recreational activities for their development and to avoid any metal fatigue caused by the house arrest. Moreover as their protection is at stake there is a need of vigil towards such undue activities. There is also need of educating people to prohibit any Child Protection concerns such as Child Trafficking and Child Marriage as a consequence of the poverty caused by the pandemic and related circumstance. The children with disabilities often do not get attention in such a vulnerable situation; they are the persons who get least attention from the families as well as in the communities. They need special care in terms of their special need along with the regular fooding and health support.
Keeping in view of the situation SVK plans to intervene in 15 villages of Lingala and Kollapur mandals of Nagarkurnool district with targeting 1500 most needy households including 300 migrants. The COVID response aims to support with food items such as Rice, Red gram, oil, sugar to 1500 families for 20 days, face masks and sanitisers to 1000 children, supplementary nutrition for 100 pregnant and lactating mothers for a month, surgical masks and surgical gloves for 200 health workers, IEC materials from District Administration on prevention of COVID 19 including personal hygiene, protection of children from possible abuses during and post lockdown period, complete sanitisation in 15 villages in collaboration with Government. Any emerging child protection concerns will be addressed through the CHILDLINE. Psychosocial support for any child including children with disability will be addressed through the current project supported by Child rights and You(CRY. Distribution of food and other materials will be done through village governance. Capacity building of volunteers to address the issues of children emerged from the lockdown and thereafter will be done with support of Child rights and You(CRY. Post lockdown, lobby with the Government will be done for organising any food for work program or ensure the villagers get NREGS benefit. For the recreational activities for the preschooling children and toddlers, coordination with the ICDS worker will be done and supported by the volunteers.
The monitoring of the response will be done under the leadership of the SVK Director supported with one coordinator and 10 volunteers. System will include inputs-activities monitoring, process quality monitoring, output tracking and impact assessments. Result & Impact, we envisage from this project are 1) Stop the increasing trends of Covid 19 spread 2) Immediate relief to needy children, women and their family