The Avon Ladies of Pakistan Providing Contraceptives Door to Door
HANDS has the honor to introduce a cadre of community based outreach health workers in areas where there is no Lady Health Worker (LHW) by a pilot project held in a remote district of Sindh during 1999-2003.
These community based health workers are local literate/low literate/illiterate females selected as per defined selection criteria, to provide basic health services in their defined target area. The selected female is trained to serve her community as community based Marvi/Misali worker to provide services in under-served non-LHW areas. The job description of Marvi worker includes provision of services to her assigned population as per defined activities and indicators of the project. Each Marvi worker is provided supportive supervision of an Lady Health Visitor (LHV) for the technical/skill based services. Marvi worker mobilizes the community and provides information/knowledge to her target population on standard information packages for behavior change. For behavior change different strategies are being used including an Information Communication Technology (ICT) based mobile application with recorded health and education messages. Thus our Marvi/Misali worker is not just a community health worker but a “Change Agent” for positive behavior change. Hands are the top NGO that provides free health care services in Pakistan or family planning services. Hands provide the best and affordable Online Medical Service. The health services are integrated with social mobilization, income generation opportunities, gender empowerment and other program components.
HANDS has developed a “Business in Box” model of Marvi workers for their sustainability and economic empowerment by establishing enterprises within their villages. Marvi workers sell common consumables of health and hygiene items at their Marvi Markaz, making their access easy for those products. Through this model Marvi worker earns around Rs. 2-4 thousand/month on average to sustain her health services.
HANDS Family Planning (FP) services are available through outreach Community Health Workers and Health Facilities
Through our Family Planning services, we have been able to help 1.11 Million and brought about a 62.5 percent contraceptive prevalence rate. This intervention has been able to avert 18,194 unsafe abortions, and prevent 39 maternal mortalities. 51,856 unwanted pregencies averted, 371 under 5 mortalities averted and 31,342 disability adjusted life years (DALYS) averted.
Health Facilities Services
HANDS provides services through 39 health facilities to augment free of cost treatment to the underprivileged communities. In the past year. through our various initiatives we were able to provide medical services to 1.625.171 people. through out patients services, normal deliveries. C-Sections. maternal health care, indoor services, major, minor surgenes, lab services and radiology.
Community Based Nutrition Initiative
According to the National Nutritional Survey 2018. four out of ten children in the country under the age of five suffer from stunted growth. HANDS has pioneered several community-based initiatives through which we have screened 1.4 million children (6 months to 5 years of age).
HANDS has been working in rural remote non – LHW areas with the Marvi workers model for improving the nutritional status of under 5 year children, pregnant and lactating women. The Marvi worker under the supervision of LHV conducts screening of malnourished children and provides services to identify malnourished including provision of supplements and counselling. Under this initiative the communities are mobilized to adopt healthy behaviors and prevent malnutrition focusing on children under 5 years.
Community Midwifery Training
We have established a well-regarded community midwifery school at HANDS hospital in lamkanda in the Karachi peri-urban area. This school is registered with the Pakistan Nursing Council IPNC). Total 545 midwives have graduated until! now. 506 are from Sindh and 39 are from Balochistan. They are benefitting over 2.7 Million population with mother and child health care services.
Worker’s Well-being Initiative
Over the last few years HANDS has been on HER (Health Enables Return) project working with facilitation and support of (Business Social Responsibility) BSR. Under this initiative, HANDS has implemented this workers wellbeing initiative with 5 suppliers (local industry) who are partners of International business groups/industries. HER (Health Enables Return) project is a global public-private partnership to empower low-income women workers along global supply chains. Recognized as a leading innovation for women’s health by the UN Every Woman, Every Child initiative, HERproject drives impact for women and business via workplace-based interventions on health (HERhealth) and financial inclusion (HERfinance). Operating in 14 countries with 40 international companies, 300 factories and farms, 20 civil society partners, and multiple health-care providers, HERproject has improved the well-being, confidence and economic potential of more than 250,000 women, and contributed to better health behavior and outcomes for their families and community members. HANDS has been the CSO partner in Pakistan with BSR/HER global project since 2011.
Initially under the HER (Health Enables Return) project of BSR (Business Social Responsibility) and Levi Strauss Foundation, HANDS has implemented Workers Well-being Initiatives in three units of US Apparel Lahore and Combined Fabrics Lahore, from 2013 – 2017. Later on HANDS engaged two other apparel factories in Faisalabad on our WWI model, with Masood Textile Mills Ltd. And Interloop Industry.
The Worker’s Well-Being initiative creates awareness about health priorities among workers and encourages behavior change for the adoption of healthy and positive practices. This initiative is under the HER (Health Enables Return) project of BSR (Business Social Responsibility) and the Levi Strauss Foundation. HANDS is working with 5 suppliers and has been able to serve 15.000 factory workers, with the program being implemented in three units of US Apparel Lahore and Combined Fabrics Lahore.
The Doctor on Call program provides affordable and convenient healthcare access from qualified doctors in Pakistan. The program is expected to help 5 million people and address major health issues where users can connect with doctors through an app for audio and video consultations. HANDS ensures that the best general physicians are available on the go. and that patient confidentiality is maintained. The intiative provides a unique opportunity for female doctors to practice from home. 50 such lady doctors are now on board with us.
Networking for Inclusion:
Community Based Inclusive Development (CBID) Network and HANDS Pakistan took many initiatives in the past with the support of member organizations to ensure the rights of persons with disabilities especially the Pakistan Disability Bill (PDA) was a great landmark achievement for CBID in Pakistan.
- CBID Network did continuous consultations and advocacy with the parliamentarians and policy makers for legislation.
- Pakistan Disability Bill (PDA) was introduced in National Assembly on 14th July, 2014.
- The Baluchistan Persons with Disabilities Act 2017 having been passed by the Provincial Assembly of Baluchistan on 20th May, 2017. The committee working on Rules of Business.
- Federal Disability Bill re-introduced on 16th January, 2018 in National Assembly This bill is going to be reintroduced after vet from ministry of Law & Justice.
- Sindh Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities Act in 11th June 2018 by Sindh Assembly. The new department Empowerment of persons with disabilities is established. The committee working on Rules of Business.
- THE GILGIT-BALTISTAN PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES ACT, 2019 by Gilgit Assembly on17th August, 2019. The committee working on Rules of Business.</li.
- National Disability Survey will be included in Pakistan Standard Living Measure (PSLM) 2019-2020
- Islamabad Computer Treetop (ICT) Disability Bill has passed by the National Assembly on January 10, 2020 and it is in Senate Standing Committee on Human Rights for review. HANDS and CBIDN is being represented in the committee.
- The Bill of Reserves Seats for persons with disabilities has passed from Standing Committee.
HANDS Independent Living Centre Karachi:
HANDS has signed a MOU in 2017 with Disability Welfare Association (DWA) for the ILC and is providing financial support for the administrative and operational cost. During the reporting period the services were provided to 23 center based Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) and 09 were provided services at their homes, besides 13 trainings on different relevant topics were also conducted to develop the capacity of the staff as well as the PWDs at the center.
Independent Living Centre Islamabad:
HANDS is also financially supporting Saaya Centre for Independent Living located in Islamabad to assist persons with disabilities. It aims to achieve greater independence by providing services and activities which enhance independent living skills and promote the public’s understanding, accommodation, and acceptance of their rights, needs and abilities.