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Help women in remote villages of Odisha get access to maternal health care



Help women in remote villages of Odisha get access to maternal health care


Chanchala crosses two rivers by foot braving heavy currents to deliver Jeepa's baby

Jeepa Majhi lives in Rupen village with her husband.

The nearest district hospital from Rupen village is close to 105 km. The nearest maternal health clinic is approximately 32 km. The town has poor roads and no mobile network connectivity.

Jeepa was very excited about her first pregnancy. She was diagnosed to be anemic during her routine check-up. The doctor advised regular antenatal care check-ups for a safe pregnancy. The doctor was expecting a high-risk pregnancy due to her health situation.

Things became serious when she developed labor pains at 2:00 am.

Getting timely medical help was the only way that Jeepa and her baby could be saved. The only way to reach Jeepa’s home in Rupen was by crossing two rivers. The currents in both rivers had become very strong because of incessant rains.

Her husband came to the Swasthya Swaraj’s clinic in Kerpai which is 7 km from Rupen village asking for help at 6:00 am. There were no other medical facilities nearby to help.

Chanchala, the nurse at Swasthya Swaraj’s clinic decided to help Jeepa. So, she set out on foot to Rupen. She crossed the knee-deep water and heavy currents risking her own life to bring a new life into the world.

Chanchala reached Jeepa’s home by 2:00 pm and delivered the baby. The baby was born at 2:30 pm with a healthy birth weight of 3 kgs.

Jeepa and her husband expressed their sincere gratitude to Chanchala. They were thankful that she decided to help them even in extreme weather conditions.

Without the help of the Swasthya Swaraj, Jeepa and her baby would have been at risk of losing their lives.

You can also help poor women living in rural areas get access to medical facilities. You can donate so that more infants in risk-prone areas can be saved from preventable deaths. You can give with confidence because every program listed is GIVEASSURED.


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About The Program

What the beneficiary gets
Maternal Care
What you get
Tax Exemption
Periodic Reports
Program Description

Swasthya Swaraj works in the Thuamul Rampur block of Odisha and aims to reduce maternal and newborn mortality due to preventable causes. Donations to this program will contribute to a fund that will cover the salary of nurses who will provide maternity and emergency support. Maternal deaths are unacceptably high in Odisha's underdeveloped tribal pockets. An official report mentions that 30 mothers died in 2016 in the Thuamul Rampur block which has a population of just 77,000. This makes the maternal mortality ratio to over 800 per 100,000 live births. The Thuamul Rampur block has 78 villages which are representative of most backward tribal communities. The infant mortality rate in these villages is 107 per 1000 live births, and 62% of this high mortality is due to the death of newborns (up to 28 days). The major causes of high maternal mortality are early motherhood and maternal illiteracy. The rural society is conditioned to early marriage. They are not receptive to health education and do not avail antenatal care facilities. The overarching causes for high maternal mortality and morbidity in these villages are poverty, lack of access to health care services, non-availability of emergency obstetric care and poor infrastructure with no roads or telephone connectivity. Swasthya Swaraj through this project aims to reduce maternal and newborn mortality due to preventable causes. The outreach for this program is done across 78 villages with the help of "Swasthya Saathis". These are women elected from each village and trained by Swasthya Swaraj to do door to door health check-ups. These Saathis are trained systematically every month for 3.5 years and are the first line of defense in the comprehensive primary health care model Swasthya Swaraj has set up. Though these Saathis are illiterate women, they can identify high-risk pregnancies and other diseases like malaria, diarrhea etc. Additionally, language is a huge barrier as each tribal community has its own dialect. Therefore the work of these Saathis is crucial for acceptance of Swasthya Swaraj in the tribal belts. Through their door to door visits, the Saathis connect Swasthya Swaraj and its skilled doctors and nurses with the expecting mothers. At present, only 22% of deliveries happen in hospitals in Swasthya Swaraj territories, this also leads to many high-risk pregnancies. Swasthya Swaraj helps with the safe delivery of around 300 babies on an annual basis. Main activities conducted under this project are Prenatal Care clinic (outreach clinic) which caters to more than 500 mothers from the tribal community in a year Training of village health workers (Swasthya Sathi) Distribution of safe delivery kit, mosquito nets for control of malaria Promotion of institutional delivery Setting up of a home delivery squad Training of traditional birth attendants Training of community health practitioners Provide transportation facility to pregnant women to reach the closest hospitals in time Setting up emergency obstetric care Provide postnatal care to new mothers Provide home-based newborn care, provide family planning services When you donate to this program, you help in saving the lives of children who are at risk of death due to preventable causes.

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About The NGO

Swasthya Swaraj
Swasthya Swaraj Logo
Swasthya Swaraj

Swasthya Swaraj is a secular, not-for-profit, organization working towards making health a reality for the poorest and unreached. Swasthya Swaraj has set up a model community health programme - Swasthya Swaraj Comprehensive Community Health Programme in the tribal-dominated Thuamul Rampur Block of Kalahandi district in Odisha, India. Thuamul Rampur block is the most backward and underdeveloped part of Odisha with the closest emergency obstetric care facility is 150 km away. Adult literacy is 26%, and adult female literacy is 5% in the dominant tribal villages. The children are miserably poor and undernourished. They are too familiar with deprivation, dejection, sicknesses, and deaths. Gross illiteracy and a superstition bound culture prevent them from seeking health care even when it is made available to them. The number of deaths from preventable causes occurring in this small population is high, but they are unreported silent deaths. Swasthya Swaraj's focus areas are Health and Education. Their Comprehensive Community Health Programme is active in 76 villages and adopts a unique community empowering model to expand their reach. Swasthya Swaraj dreams of a people's movement for SWARAJ in health - a just and equitable society, free from the shackles of ill health, illiteracy, and poverty.

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Ngo Founder
Founded in 1991
NGO Leadership

Gemma Joseph

Area of Operation
Area of Operation
Area of Operation

Maternal Health | women

Location Of work
Location of Work
Location of Work


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Last Audited
Last Audited by GiveIndia

December 2018

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