My thoughts on the REACH Team Day

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Having planned the event with my colleagues in October 2012, I was happy Team Day finally happened on 10.01.2013. The purpose behind the event was to enable all members of the organization to come together and have a sense of being a part of a larger group.

Dr.Ramya addressed the gathering for the first time after taking charge as Executive Director on a full time basis. She energized and enthused everyone to commit themselves to the challenges of Public Health. I was impressed by the story of The Pencil…

This was followed by presentations on the work done at REACH through the different projects.

I noticed that all the Field Officers who were involved in patient care and intensive field work (PPM staff) felt great pride in sharing their achievements accompanied with big smiles spread across their faces. It was indeed an occasion for them to pat their backs and be happy.

“7 new private practitioners joined the PP network in my zone”

“13 patients referred 20 cases to me of whom I started 7 on treatment”

“66 programs done in the last year sensitizing more than 1000 people”

“11 cases were identified following a program in an area.”

“I was happy to ensure the completion of 2 patients as they were most challenging”

“716 house visits were made totally last year in the course of my monitoring’

“Providing DOTS to 39 cases totally last year”

“Initiated 99 cases on treatment”

“Food Security research study taking shape after a long process”

“95 calls on the helpline last year”

These numbers may be small, but the amount of work that each staff puts in to achieve them is indeed extraordinary.

I enjoyed the experiences this day brought me and in particular the REACH tree, which will now be put up as a reminder in the office of the work which still continues to be done in the society we live.

I and all of you in the REACH team… yes we do make a great team… let’s keep ourselves going as long as we can…

Sheela Augustine



From Belgium with Love

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Inspired by a book she read on Mother Theresa as a teenager Elona dreamt of coming to India ever since. She longed to do something on the lines of what Mother Theresa had done. Her passion brought her to the country three years back. She worked for two months through an NGO  with the homeless people on the ghats of the river Ganga  at Varanasi in North India. Elona is back again from the land of chocolates to India, this time in the south, in Tamil Nadu, at Chennai . She is now married and has come with her  husband,  an engineer, who has been sent to India on a project for a three year period.

Elona is deeply grateful  to her husband who has kindly permitted her to work  with the slum dwellers of S. M. Nagar. Wanting to pursue her dream again, Elona approached Philip, the Project Manager of Speed Trust, an NGO which works for the wellbeing and development of the people of S.M. Nagar. Understanding her desire to help, Philip gave Elona an opportunity to extend a touch of love and comapssion to the slum dwellers.

A qualified nurse by profession, Elona treats the people who come to Speed Trust with minor ailments. She uses her expertise to help patients with wounds by dressing them up. When the person needs more medical attention, she accompanies them to Kalyani hospital and is instrumental in getting them the required medical help.

Couple of months back, when REACH organised a TB awareness program at S. M. Ngar, two patients with Tuberculosis were identified, Elona took up the responsibility of being their DOTS provider. She houses the drug box at the Speed Trust  office where the patients come and swallow their tablets in her presence. She also gives one of the patients his injections, for whom it is part of the treatment.

“Being in India for me is an opportunity to learn a new culture and meet new people. What I am doing is very minimal in a land where a lot more has to be done. If every one can spare a little time out, a lot can be changed” Elona.

“When the patient fails to come for his days dose, Elona immediately takes his tablets and injection and walks throuth the streets of S. M. Nagar to reach the patients house not paying heed to the extremely filthy and nauseating condition around her. She does all this on an honorary basis. I am really taken aback by this young lady’s deep rooted  compassion to help people in need” Chitra

M. Chitra

REACH Blog Team

Connecting for Common Good

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Montfort Community Development Society (MCDS) is an Integrated
Community Development Program reaching out to thousands of families in urban
slums, coastal slums and in Tamilnadu Slum Clearance Tenements in Chennai, Kannaginagar and Chemmencherry.

MCDS runs with the main objective of empowering women, promoting better health conditions and child rights in these communities. MCDS follows an Integrated Community Development approach.

As part of its initiative on health MCDS approached REACH for monthly awareness programs on TB for their women Self-help-group members

They chalked out a well planned annual schedule for programs to be held every month at different areas where they work.

The following are the details of the program:

Date                    Time                       Area
17/04/12         3 P.M to 4 P.M       Kakkan Colony
15/05/12         3 P.M to 4 P.M       Thousand lights
19/06/12         3 P.M to 4 P.M       Kannagi nagar
17/07/12         3 P.M to 4 P.M       Srinivasapuram
21/08/12         3 P.M to 4 P.M       Ice House
18/09/12         3 P.M to 4 P.M       Anna Colony
16/10/12         3 P.M to 4 P.M       Ranganathapuram
20/11/12         3 P.M to 4 P.M       Vadapalani
18/12/12         3 P.M to 4 P.M       Kuilthotam

This is a perfect example of excellent outcomes resulting from NGO’s networking with each other. NGO’s in this instance are supporting each other for the common good of community without any monetary stratagem behind the scenes.

The REACH resource person Ms. Mangayarkarasi sensitizing the Self Help Group members on TB

People interested in attending the programs can contact Ms. Nazareth at 9840395943 from MCDS or Ms. Sheela Augustine at 9841591361 from REACH.

We at REACH honor the efforts of MCDS and look forward to working with many more such NGO’s.

REACH Blog Team