ASHA (Adolescent Students’ Health Alternative)

ASHA- Adolescent Students’ Health Alternative is a successful project module for helping/educating children-youths to adopt HEALTH HABITS over a period of time. Right now a group of more than 25 homemaker women turned volunteer health-teachers are taking ahead this project under the leadership of Dr. Neha Vakharia, Trustee Secretary of OASIS trust at Bangalore. They conduct Regular HEALTH CLASS in Corporation/Government aided schools adopted by OASIS. The response they have received is not only heart warming but also eye-opening. Children are rather eagerly waiting to be taught the right things. So far ASHA – Adolescent Students’ Health Alternative has reached to approx. 16 schools and 950 adolescents in Bangalore & South India.

ASHA is the health education project, started in 2004, by Dr Neha Vakharia, Trustee Secretary OASIS, to make significant difference in the health of underprivileged children. Today it aspires to be nationwide movement bringing more and more hope and health for the children of our nation. While today’s medical world is becoming more and more quick fix oriented, restricting only to physical sphere of health; ASHA hopes to provide preventive, holistic, long term and cost effective health solutions. ASHA sees its role as one of the catalyst, “Planting the seeds for better health” by working with government schools and community to reach more and more children where they live, learn and play. The goal is to impart long term changes by facilitating cultivation of good health habits that help the children to become healthier humans and citizens. Thus as the name suggests, it is a fundamental and effective alternative approach towards community and national health.

What is the Need

 

The most Vital, Irreplaceable and Invaluable resource of any nation is Child/Youth.

So it is our sacred responsibility to see that it is developed to its fullest potential.

Today not only at national level but also on worldwide basis there is a grave concern about the health of children. The shocking, terrible deterioration in the overall health of child/youth through ignorance, by starvation as a result of poverty, rising incidences of HIV and AIDS is compelling for prompt action.

It has become now so clear to every one of us that Crisis programme or only curative health programmes are not successful.

The decisions people make and the behaviors they adopt during childhood and youth have very deep effect on their health as adults and have a cumulative impact on the longitivity as well as the quality of an individual’s life.

Thus it is highly essential that we need to have a well-thought, comprehensive yet simple Health Curriculum for children and youth.

The complexity of urban poor society with living, transportation, poverty, environmental hazards and constantly changing environment presents huge problems for the burgeoning youth population. Youth in rural communities face stress in dealing with change, ever evolving technology and environmental dysfunction.

So a dire need has been created to communicate with children/youth regarding Health and Lifestyle improvement.

 

What is the Vision

 

Healthy Child, Healthy Nation

 

Slum Health Centers, which we are running since year 2001 at Bangalore, were other eye openers and in fact our painful experience of giving treatment without any permanent effect gave birth to ASHA.

 

ASHA was launched in 2004, after lot of research and experiments, a model for providing Comprehensive, intensive Health Education to children/ youth was developed.

Quite successfully we have prepared a model where such educative program can play definite role to meet the devastating national and community problems such as HIV/AIDS, Drug abuse, Violence, School drop outs, Child labor, etc.

 

We are also providing intensive, holistic training to our teammates mainly home makers, senior citizens to be an effective Health Educator.

Thus, with an intense desire to empower children/youth for Health skills/ Life skills, which can give them responsibility of choice in their lives and develop their potential to its fullest, we started this programme in Corporation/Government aided/ poor schools of Bangalore. 

 

ASHA – Adolescent Students’ Health Alternative  Providing comprehensive, intensive Health Education to underprivileged children/youth Providing preventive, wholistic, long lasting, cost effective health solutions

 

It will lead to...

Empowering underprivileged children/youth for health skills & Life skills, which make them realize that they are capable of taking care of their health by learning health skills and simultaneously facilitate voluntary adaptation of Healthy Life Style for healthful living 

 

It will lead to...

More Healthier Citizens, Healthier Workforce, Greater Productivity 

 

It will lead to...

More Healthy, Vibrant and Prosperous Nation

 

Best Models to address National Health Problem

 

Project ASHA works with:

  • Underprivileged Section: They form the major portion of our population, thus aiming to impact on larger population of our nation.

  • Children/Youth: They are the most vital……asset and lifeline of our nation. Childhood is the exciting phase of life when human beings start learning about themselves and world around them. It is also a time when we start forming our habits whether right or wrong depending upon what we are exposed to. If we catch them at that age we can help them develop right habits before the wrong habits take their roots.

  • Holistic approach: Our focus is on all round development - physical, mental, social and emotional as they form the dimensions of complete health.

  • Education in focus: We keep education in focus. Hence aim at long term and effective solutions rather than fire fighting or quick-fix attitude.

  • Continuous and Intensive approach: We associate with children for one or two years, providing them knowledge step by step, meet them frequently and regularly, continuously giving them warmth, guidance and support while they are trying to learn new habits.

  • Cost effectiveness: As we are addressing the wider and underprivileged section of our nation, we need to offer cost effective solution which anybody can implement easily without needing expensive resources.

  • Spirit of volunteerism and utilization of untapped human resource: Most dedicated, service oriented and underutilized resource of our nation is WOMEN-THE HOME MAKERS and the senior citizens. The more we channelize their skills and love in their heart for social causes, the more they will feel satisfied and productive; the better would be their role into the solutions of national problems. Thus involving the home makers and senior citizens into community health service and education is our unique approach.

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