Community Based Organisations – CBO
Building resilient communities and forward-thinking children
“It broke my heart when Dhurka quit school and walked straight into a paddy field to run the family. I did not want to see her muddy feet and chipped nails, rather I dreamt of her teaching in a school. Yet, there were no alternatives. Thankfully, the SSH team rewrote her future. Dhurka continued her studies in the same school; I became a member of their self-help group; availed government benefits to get free goats from the District Social Welfare Board. Now, Dhurka is in college, doing her B.com,” exulted a joyful Ramuthi from Senkuruchi village in Namakkal district.
The transformative story of Dhurka and many others are the building blocks of CBOs. SSH runs a series of community-based organisations such as Children’s Club, Little Flower Children’s Network, Parents Support Group, Children Support Group, Alternative Learning Centre, Self Help Groups, Bharathi Women Federation and Working along with the CBOs, SSH ensures the community prepares itself to lead a healthier life, children pursue their education, women gain confidence and earn a living while advocating to avail benefits of government schemes.
SSH to date has the following CBOs in Dindigul and Namakkal districts.
The various clubs build confidence, instil leadership and critical thinking skills, encourage education beyond textbooks and discover a passion for lifelong community service.
Children‘s club is further divided into 5 sub-committees like health, education, savings, linkage and eco clubs.
Health Committee wipes out discrimination, creates awareness on HIV/AIDS, dengue fever, COVID-19, conducts polio camps and runs mass cleaning of villages.
Education Committee initiates peer education, enhances general knowledge and encourages weaker students.
Savings Committee instils children to save – Rs.10 to Rs.15 per child monthly in banks or post offices.
Linkage Committee participates in Gramashaba meetings and addresses core problems of children.
Eco Clubs promotes kitchen gardens, segregation of waste and creates a green environment in villages.
LITTLE FLOWER CHILDREN NETWORK – LFC
LFC Network is the apex body of children’s clubs at the district level. SSH has formed children’s clubs in village cluster and finally at the district level with a total membership of 4564 children in Dindigul and Namakkal districts. LFC is the common forum in which all the Children Clubs take part by paying Rs.10 by each member as an entrance fee.
- Ascertains child rights; voices against child labour, child marriage and child sexual abuse
- Coordinates with local government authorities to improve the infrastructure of villages
- Plants saplings in villages
- Creates awareness on healthcare
PLHA Support Group – PSG
78 PSGs consisting of 6-8 members in each group, totalling to 450 members meet once a month. They create space for sharing and exchanging new information among the PLHAs.
“I didn’t know about any of the government schemes available until I joined this group,” says 40-year old Hema. Hema now receives all the government entitlements which has saved her from borrowing money from money lenders. The members meet once a month and discuss about their health, education, economic & social improvements and they also guide themselves towards availing govt. schemes and networking.
Children Support Group – CSG
The group was created specifically for the children to share and seek solutions to their personal problems.
- Coordinates Children Affected with AIDs to re-join schools.
- Works with other NGOs for availing support services for children
- Encourages active participation of children in extracurricular activities
Alternative Learning Centres – ALC
The ALCs are set up in 15 remote villages where most of our target children reside. With a strength of 30 students in each centre, a qualified teacher is dedicated to overseeing the centre. Learning beyond textbooks – seems to be the main mantra of ALC. Therefore, the centres help children observe, predict, understand, think critically and intensively and apply his/her education to solve challenges and contribute to moving society forward. We hold Parents Teachers Meetings every three months and assess the growth of the children and provide extra coaching to those children who lack behind their studies.
The ALCs have been instrumental in rewriting the future of many children who otherwise would have been dropouts. Today the children exhibit not only academic excellence but confidence, joy, happiness and peace.
- Provides non-formal education to children from vulnerable backgrounds
- Offers children the opportunity to express themselves through art, music and writing
- Encourages children to participate and excel at District level competition in essay writing, speech, chess, dance and games
- Plays an active role in community developments
- Creates awareness on HIV/ AIDS and related diseases, personal hygiene and ill-effects of child labour
- Organises competitions in sports, dance, signing, essay writing and speech
- Involves the children in mass cleaning of villages and distribute free saplings to create a better environment
Self-help Groups and Bharathi Women Federation
Self-help groups and Bharathi Women Federation stand as pillars of strength to women who are widowed and/or living with HIV/AIDS, give them hope for a promising future. All the SHGs of SSH take part by paying Rs.100 each as entrance fee to the Federation. The members receive health, leadership and entrepreneurial training and loans to start small businesses.
- Addresses and solves issues on unemployment, seasonal work, denial of property rights, stigma and discrimination, child labour, gender disparity, malnutrition and open defecation.
- Uses the participatory approach to address and solve the core issues.
- Advocates for major policy changes for empowering women, safeguarding children and protecting the disadvantaged groups in the community.
- Plays an important role in raising local resources for SSH