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Stories From the Field 2006

Opposing family joins polio eradication campaign in Moradabad
Until a few months ago, Yaseem and his wife used to hide their four children from the polio vaccinators and volunteers, often slamming the door on their faces, fearing the polio vaccine.

Crippled by polio, Moradabad girl mobilizes villagers
“Would you like to see your child crippled like me,” asks Mehrab Jahan as she counsels families to vaccinate their children against polio, in this village in Moradabad district of India.

Bal Samvad Adalat helps in absolving 72 children
Fourteen-year-old Sanjay stood in the market place near his home when a violent fight broke out between two groups. When the police arrived on the scene, he was thought to have taken part in the fight and was arrested.

Rural Karnataka school kids improve health and environment
When 12 -year old Hemalatha welcomes you at the gate of her school, she does it is with ease and panache. For she is the ‘chief minister’ of the Government Lower Primary School at Devarahalli, in Karnataka.

Sishu Prativa Utsav-2006: Learning for Living
It was all like a dream for Jayanti Sabar, a class 10th student of Nalini Bidya Mandir of Bariguda, Rayagada district, Orissa. She came to the state capital, met the Governor of Orissa and presented her science project.

Little fingers which used to pick rags from dustbins are learning to write
Just a few months’ back Divya, Madhu and Asmita were strolling in the lanes of Bhopal searching for polybags from the city dustbins. It is like character of story on the lives of girls who live in the slums near Bhopal station.

30 village child reporters geared up to change the world
Published in the maiden issue of Balvani – literally, the “Voice of Children” (in Hindi) – a children’s magazine made by children, this eye-opener sketch says a lot about the society around us.

Are domestic child workers children of a lesser God?
Are children from all over the world the same? The right to education, basic medical facilities and nutritious food is really available to all?

Child Labourers- a World of Darkness
Child labourers live in a world of brutality, harassment both physical and emotional and extreme forms of poverty. Coming from the poorest of the poor, these families are not even able to earn enough for one-day food.

Women of Junia show the way
The dusty road, coming off the NH 8 near village Dooni in Tonk district of Rajasthan, leads to the village Junia, where UNICEF has assisted a voluntary organisation Bal Rashmi to promote integrated development for women and children.

Learning at one’s own pace
They are all kids of different ages. They attend school but the teacher doesn’t impose restrictions. There’s a blackboard but it’s all over the lower wall. They learn alphabets, social studies and math but the teacher hardly teaches them.

Who is Markam Dulley?
She was a four-year-old tribal girl sacrificed in the name of a revolution. Her eight-year-old brother, Markam Joga, crippled by polio recalled that fateful night when the Naxalites attacked their rehabilitation camp.

Bihar children take to streets against child labour
The children of Bihar took the centre stage of an awareness campaign against child labour.

East Side Story launched - Children’s voices through films
When Rajamma saw Kalvettu, a short film about a boy who suffers ill-treatment from an alcoholic father and is forced to give up school, she thought hard.

Girl stars of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka – 2006
“The True Heroines” as described by social activist and film actress Amala Annikeni were all smiling on September 23rd, 2006. At a special ceremony they were felicitated for their positive spirit and determination in life.

Child fights battle against her own mother
The day at school is long over. But Bharti, 12, is in no hurry to leave. She has some reading to do. The last test she took was fine, but not good enough.

Miracle Baby: Day-old girl returns from clutches of death
Pediatric ward of Government Rajindra Hospital is hosting a special child these days. She has no name, but if she were to have one, “Adbhut” (marvelous) would be perfect. She has just survived a fatal assault that no other child, could have.

Where there’s a will there’s a way.
In a room smaller than the average office cubicle lives her family of eight including her mother and six siblings. The only sunlight which filters in the house is Ayyamma’s smile as she recalls her life.

No longer condemned to a life of filth
Sixty-one year old Kamla was reborn two years ago. Condemned to a life of drudgery and indignity for nearly half a century, this manual scavenger had been carrying human excreta from the young age of eight.

Towards achieving total sanitation
Sanitation training camp for anganwadi workers sponsored by UNICEF and conducted by Centre for Environment Education, Bangalore.

Importance of Breast Feeding
Four months old Nisha was the center of attraction for the women’s meeting held in Sarola village.

Saving mothers, saving families in West Bengal
She saved a mother and child from dying today itself!” is how Kakoli Chowdhury, a petite, soft-spoken woman was described to me during routine field monitoring.

Orissa youths take oath as safe motherhood advocates
It is half past one in the night and the downpour is quite heavy. Three youths are pulling a rickety cycle rickshaw through the mud-slippery village roads. They arrive at the primary health centre (PHC) carrying a pregnant woman.

A proactive approach to neo-natal health
Perpetuating antiquated practices at birth in Rajasthan’s villages seriously threaten the survival of newborns in this state. Preventing the mother and newborn from stepping out of the home for the first 40 days is one such practice.

A lifeline for the newborn
When 26-year-old Kasthuri gave birth to twins in January this year, she was more scared than happy. Her baby girl weighed only 1.8 kilograms

Saving children's lives in Bihar: Partnering with NGOs for IMNCI
As Kavita Kumari sits at the Anganwadi Centre familiarising children with numbers and alphabets, mothers and grandmothers keep pouring in. They come with children who have high fever, a bruise that is not getting healed, even more serious complaints

IMNCI through the eyes of a middle-class mother in Andaman islands
Chitra, a young mother of two at Bathuvasti village in the outskirts of Port Blair, capital of the Andaman and Nicobar islands , would qualify as "educated, middle class" in the Indian context. She has a post-graduate degree in library science;

Public-Private partnerships bring Kangaroo Mother Care to Karanjberi
No one had heard about “Kangaroo Mother Care” in Karanjberi till Paru Ben, the village anganwadi worker, showed rural mothers how this practice of holding a newborn, skin-to-skin (against the parent’s chest) could help pre-term, low birth-weight babies

400,000 girls achieve improved literacy at Summer Camps in Bihar
Phulwari Sharif, Patna: Khushnasiba Parveen, a student of class IV in a government-run primary school in Patna, had been going to school for four years but could not read a simple sentence.

Munni wants to become a doctor
Munni, a 10-year-old girl from Jhakela village in tribal dominated Jhabua district of Madhya Pradesh, now studies in a school, something which she could only dream of a couple of years ago.

IKEA UNICEF launch initiative against child labour in Andhra Pradesh
Children employed in the cotton plantation industry in Andhra Pradesh have a reason to smile with corporate giant IKEA joining hands with UNICEF to prevent child labour in the south-eastern Indian state.

Changing lives in the brick kilns of West Bengal
For 13-year-old Sanjay Mondal, carrying a load of 88 pounds on his head is routine.

Long road to freedom for child domestic workers
When Ramesh Kumar’s father told him that he was going to India’s capital city, Delhi, he was thrilled. Little did he know, what awaited him.

From holding knives to wielding pencils
From slaughter houses to classrooms, from holding knives to wielding pencils, from fear to hope. The children of the Qureshi community in Parbhani, a region 200 kms east of Aurangabad district in Maharashtra, have come a long way.

Fighting child labour in cotton mills
Mohammad Hasan, a lean and tall teenager from a slum in India’s commercial capital, Mumbai, sports a cheery smile. He exudes a mix of confidence and exuberance suitable to his age.

IKEA-UNICEF partnership: restoring lost childhoods
Children employed in the cottonseed industry in the south Indian state of Andhra Pradesh have reason to smile with the partnership between corporate giant IKEA and UNICEF expanding to include the state.

Cluster Storage Strategy: a viable approach toward water security in Gujarat
Meherben, 54, a housewife of remote Warli village in Banni, Gujarat says, “Our life was miserable without water. We used to fetch water from a government water supply point 4 km away from the village”.

Profiles of affected children
She lost her father when she was one year old and her mother when she was 12. She came to know about the status only last year when she went for a check up due to weakness.

4.6 million children to get Japanese Encephalitis shots by May 31 in Gorakhpur, U.P.
Gorakhpur, May 26: For the diminutive five year old Mohd Shafi it may have appeared as yet another joyful piggyback ride by his ever-indulgent older sister Fatima, but for the latter, the journey to the vaccination booth was one with a deeper purpose.

Youth groups focus on birth registration in Maharashtra
Chandrapur, Maharashtra: Community awareness, generated through the Village Planning Process initiated by UNICEF together with Nehru Yuva Kendra (NYK) in Chandrapur district of Maharashtra is yielding results.

A special day for Malti
It’s a special day for Malti; she’s wearing her best dress and ready to go. The 7 year old’s daily wage labourer parents are out to work.

Making every child count in the City of Joy
For 13 year old Malati Das life was an unending struggle. Picked up by child traffickers from her native village in South 24 Parganas, young Malati was sold to a brothel in the red light district of Sonagachi in Kolkata.

Ensuring safe motherhood
Renuka Giri’s working day begins quite early in the morning. This young and motivated ANM (Auxiliary Nurse and Midwife) in Dhanora village health center in Latur, Maharashtra leaves for her daily round of home visits at around 8 am.

Mother support groups promote nutrition in Maharashtra
The small group of women huddled with their young babies at the Anganwadi Centre are listening intently to Durga Gavit, as her four month old son Prashant sleeps comfortably in her lap.

Nutrition Rehabilitation - reviving young lives
Cuddled in his mother’s lap, two year old Naval looked quite comfortable. Even his mother agreed that her son seemed in better health than anytime since his birth.

SSK - Reaching out to the excluded and underprivileged in West Bengal
The Shishu Shiksha Karmasuchi programme( SSK) is one of the most innovative education programmes to reach out to deprived and excluded children in the state of West Bengal

Child marriage in Bihar: Three girls tell their own stories
Girls are generally married off early in the Indian state of Bihar. Most of them are still children, unprepared to bear either the burden of marital responsibility or childbearing.

Sishu Mitra Project helps build awareness against child marriages in Murshidabad
Life was going smoothly for thirteen year old Sundari till the day her parents suddenly decided to get her married. Thanks to the efforts of the field mobilisers from the ‘Shishu Mitra’ Project Sundari can still go to school, and play with her friends.

Community action against child marriages
The village micro-planning process initiated by UNICEF in partnership with HALO Foundation (NGO Partner), in the villages of Lohara block, Osmanabad district of Maharashtra identified child marriage as one of the critical problems in the area.

Early Marriage: A childhood interrupted
Married at 13, Shanti got pregnant immediately afterwards and lost her underweight, prematurely delivered baby. She is pregnant again. “This time, we hope she pulls it off,” says her mother-in-law.

Akkamahadevia refuses to be a child bride
Akkamahadevia, a ten year old girl from Farhatabad village in Gulbarga district in the State of Karnataka, preferred to continue with her studies and refused to be a child bride.

Dholpur - where a Helpline saves lives
Ramsakhi, an expectant mother, resident of a remote village ‘Kankari’ in Dholpur district of Rajasthan is alive today, thanks to the Janani Surakasha (Safe Motherhood) Obstetric Helpline.

Phulpadar – the village with 4 Traditional Birth Attendants
We reached Phulpadar village in Koraput block after traveling around 18 kilometers, 15 on a vehicle and 3 on foot crossing a mountain river. The village road has never seen a vehicle in its life.

Jaimun Khatun's half-pill of trust and remedy
Forty-year old Jaimun Khatun, an anganwadi worker, considers herself to be fortunate that her work requires her to be with children. She lives in Chatwal village in Jharkhand's Ranchi district

Making Every Child Count
Usha Sakat, an Aanganwadi Worker in Honala village in Osmanabad district of the state of Maharashtra, proudly recalls how she succeeded in improving the health of an underweight newborn baby girl in her village.

Laxmipriya saves a life - a real life story from Mayurbhanj district of Orissa
Laxmipriya, an Anganwadi worker in Baunspal village in the state of Orissa, was on her regular home visits when she came across a very feverish one-month old Bishal, son of Gopabandhu and Mausumi Behera.

Nirmal Gram award - A New Dawn for a Village in Uttar Pradesh
Until a few months ago, Yaseem and his wife used to hide their four children from the polio vaccinators and volunteers, often slamming the door on their faces, fearing the polio vaccine.

Quality education package produces better results in Maharashtra schools

Avian Flu in India - Government seeks UNICEF assistance for medicines
Amidst continuing culling operations, the Maharashtra government asked UNICEF to supply additional stock of 50,000 tablets of Tamiflu in its preparedness efforts to combat possible human infection.

Children unite to conserve water in Maharashtra
The students of Pandhurna Bujurg village in Ghatanji block of Yavatmal district in the state of Maharashtra recently constructed a vanrai bandhar, a type of check dam, on a nullah near their school.

Sister Sudha - educating marginalised girls
Sister Sudha Varghese has been sending girls to school from the Musahar community in Bihar for 20 years. Her institution, Nari Gunjan, has more than 1,500 girls enrolled and runs over 50 centres.



For every child
Health, Education, Equality, Protection