Families of the CNEs that RMF employs as part of this initiative, many of whom are from the intervention villages themselves and use their salary from RMF to support their children’s education and to improve the lives of their families.
This project empowers communities through health literacy and connects rural communities with the government health and nutrition services available. This project aims to prove that a holistic, decentralized, community-based approach to malnutrition eradication will have better health outcomes, be more inclusive for children under 5, and will be more cost-effective in the long-run than centralized approaches, especially for rural, marginalized tribal communities. Our team of up to 75 Community Nutrition Educators (CNEs) and 6 District Coordinators has covered enormous ground across 5 districts and 600 villages in Madhya Pradesh.
During this reporting period, in addition to the 4,601 villagers who benefited from education and counseling sessions conducted by RMF India’s Community Nutrition Educators (CNEs), 235 children suffering from acute malnutrition were identified and/or received treatment:
This is a story about change: change in the management of menstrual cycles in the tribal village of Kasrawad. The village is located in Barwani district of southwestern Madhya Pradesh, India, where RMF has started Real Medicine Enterprises, piloting a social venture to educate tribal women on menstruation and provide them with low-cost sanitary pads.
Bhagwati Bai is a 40-year-old woman living in a joint family in Kasrawad. Bhagwati always used a piece of cloth during her menstrual cycle. Because of this practice, she had to face many problems like rashes, infections, changing wet cloths more than twice a day, and fear of stains on her clothing. She didn’t know about sanitary pads. However, RMF India’s CNE Mamta Awase visited the village, met with Bhagwati, and counseled her on the use of sanitary pads during menstruation, making her aware of the benefits of pads and drawbacks of unhygienic cloths.
Bhagwati agreed to try sanitary pads, and she bought them from CNE Mamta at INR 25 for 7 pads, which is a low-cost and affordable price for rural women, as compared to market prices. Bhagwati started using sanitary pads in place of cloths, and now she feels comfortable and free from the problems that she previously faced during menstruation.
Now Bhagwati is happy, and she helps CNE Mamta to educate other tribal women and adolescent girls on the use of sanitary pads during menstruation. Today, most of the adolescent girls and women in the village are purchasing sanitary pads from CNE Mamta and using them. CNE Mamta has sold 32 packs of sanitary pads in Kasrawad to date, effecting positive change in the lives of the village women.