Completed Research Projects - 2014
Socio-Cultural Dimensions Of Sustainability Of Sensitizing Self Help Groups (SHGs) To Reproductive-Health Via Empowerment And Engagement (SSSTREE)
About The Project
This was an ICMR-funded multi-center action research demonstration study. The purpose of this project was to sensitise, mobilise, and engage women through the self-help groups to take charge of their reproductive health, including cervical cancer, and act as change agents for other women in the community. Thus, there was a dual commitment to study a system and, concurrently, to collaborate with members of the system in changing it in what is regarded as a desirable direction.To improve reproductive health outcomes among women, there was a need to evaluate the psychosocial dynamics of community-based programmes. Evidence shows that financial autonomy can confer health empowerment. Evidence shows that financial autonomy can confer health empowerment. Thus, using the current model of SHG capacity building, increasing awareness of and access to reproductive health, including menstrual hygiene, syndromic recognition of RTI and STIs, peripartum infections, and cervical cancer—has become a pressing need among rural women. A multi-center study was conducted (3 sites in Karnataka, 1 in Rajasthan, and 1 in Chhattisgarh) where action research was demonstrated to project, sensitise, mobilise, and engage SHG women using 3-day sensitization workshops followed by 2 refresher trainings at 4–6-month intervals. By using mixed methods, measure change from baseline in direct and indirect impact measures, including rates of RCH-specific awareness and attitudes, practices, and socio-cultural dynamics of the uptake or lack thereof of the above intervention. This model may lend itself to evaluation for scalability at the national level, due to its implications for increasing community-based health care needs and the functioning of ASHAs, and thus complementing the current structure of the NRHM.