Community Assessment at Vikroli (Surya Nagar)
Cipla Foundation was keen to understand the health-related needs of the community located in Surya Nagar, an informal settlement in Vikhroli where Cipla’s main activities are located. The idea behind gathering this knowledge was to be able to formulate and implement programs that would be beneficial to the community and would bring about positive changes in their lives. In order to gain this knowledge Cipla Foundation assigned PUKAR to gather this information through its innovative technique of Community Based Participatory Action Research (CBPAR).
Surya Nagar has a mixed population of Hindu and Muslim residents. The terrain of this locality is hilly with the hutments scattered across the hill. This makes these people vulnerable to landslides in monsoons, causing property destruction and endangers lives. This terrain also makes it very difficult to carry sick people, pregnant women to access medical help in emergency situation.
After creating a team of local youth to act as Barefoot Researchers with training of data collections like surveys and mapping, these youth developed a good sense of the problems related to their community, learnt to debate various issues. Their data analysis revealed issues such as destruction of property during monsoons due to land slides, and lack of safeguard against it, difficulties in transportation of sick patients due to hilly terrain and lack of proper staircases, garbage disposal very far away from the community leading to mounds of garbage collecting around the community and lack of lighting witin the lanes. There were healthy debates on these issues within the community youth and after analysis of the data they presented it to the local representative with their demands of receiving specific help from him about their demands