HIV / AIDS LIKENED TO THE FIRESTORM OCCURING IN JUNGLES, IS ENGULFING OUR SOCIETY WITH INCREDIBLE SPEED. NOW, WE CANNOT AFFORD TO BE COOL AND SLACK. WE NEED A TEAM OF FIRE FIGHTERS TO BUILD A FIRE LINE AT A DISTANCE FROM THIS FIRE AND BURN OUT THE AREA BETWEEN FIRESTORM AND THE SOCIETY, DEPRIVING THE HIV / AIDS FIRESTORM OF FUEL.
Mumbai, the political capital of the Maharashtra state of India has 80 lakh slum-dwellers living in nearly 1000 slum pockets, which occupy 35% of the city. Mumbai generates 0.9 million industrial jobs, an answer to the problems of migrants (nearly 2500 persons daily), who accounts for 35 to 40 % of the decadal increase in the population. Reasons responsible for this are political interests, lethargic administrative and bureaucratic decisions, human rights interferences, constitutional provisions, poverty, regional / religion developmental imbalances and some other aspects of emigrational motivation. Because of this overcrowding, in the last 5 years, there has been a sharp spurt in the incidence of asthma, respiratory ailments, cardiac problems, T.B., cancer, Aids, etcDemographic Details:
Youth in Mumbai’s slums lack societal amenities like recreational / entertainment facilities, sanitation facilities etc. Unemployment and illiteracy is a main obstacle in the progress of youth in Mumbai’s slums. Health of population in these areas is directly proportional to their economic, social and cultural status. Majority of these have their spouses kept at their native places. Long working hours, relative isolation from the family and geographical social mobility fosters casual sexual relationships and make them highly vulnerable to STDs / HIV / AIDS.
There are many reasons of the migration of girls prostitutes to pockets surrounding slums in Mumbai. Some girls are from good families but are compelled to do this because of poverty, some are cheated under the name of employment / entry in film industry, and some girls are stolen and sold for trafficking to Mumbai. There is also a social custom of prostitution of girls prevalent in some parts of the country. A large group of them is inducted into the prostitution business through such religious and cultural sanctions. They include the Jogin community of Andhra Pradesh, the Basavi of Maharashtra and Karnataka, , Rajnat and Kanjar from Rajasthan, the Bedia, Dehredar, the Nat and Gandharva community of North India, the Banchhra tribe of Madhya Pradesh. Most of the Nepali, and Manipuri girls are smuggled to Mumbai under the pretext of garment trade.COMMUNITY INTERVENTION MODEL :
The following practical guidelines for intervention in a community,can go a long way in solving the problem of spread of AIDS iin our slum communities. The client system:
High Risk Behavior Category people, namely, Transport workers / Truckers, Brothel / Non-Brothel Sex Workers, Intravenous Drug Users, Organized / Un-Organized Business / Industrial Sectors, migrant population, Slum Based Youth etc, meaning the community going to be benefited from scheme of intervention directly or indirectly through participation of others.
The change agent system:
Any specialist who is a helper and an outsider involved in planned change is the change agent like CBO / NGO/ VOLUNTARY workers, School / College students, representatives of local public / communities, Medical support teams, self help groups, youth clubs,women clubs, marriage bureaus, organized / un-organized Business / Industrial / transport owners, Representatives of Municipal Corporation, Govt, Law,& Order Depts, Corporate Sector, human right activists. The target system:
The target system refers to those people who need to be changed or influenced to accomplish the goals of the change effort. It is envisaged that, in the initial phase / stage of work the client system will also be the target system. The community level workers, who are already a part of the change agent system, constitute the target system and are to later form the action system. Thus, there is going to be the client system, the target system and the action system that are to be from the same community.
The action system:
The Action system comprises all those systems the change agent system works with in order to achieve the goals of the change system. In this practicum, the resource persons / Groups, going to line up, will form the action system along with the change agent system.NETWORKING:
Proper networking also have some important social dimensions namely solidarity, self-help, and collective decision-making and management. AIDS is a developmental problem and not a mere public health issue. The inexorable spread of the disease from the initial epicenters to the rest of society is a precursor to the fact that we will experience same snowball effect in diseases yet to come which could be even critical than AIDS.It is right time to build a fireline at a distance from the fire. AUTHOR – ANJAN RUPAWATE