Meet Dewaki, an ambassador for maternal health.
story Thursday, December, 2016
If you ask her, if there's something that she has long sought for, it has
been a child. Suffering from Pelvic Inflammatory Disease , (consent was
asked before posting this article), Dewaki couldn't find the happiness of
raising a child. But when we met her in 2016, roughly four years after her second miscarriage, we were introduced to the inspiring character of Dewaki who had taken the oath to ensure that the other young mothers in her slum didn't suffer from any preventable maternal health complication.
Since, the 12 mothers in her neighborhood lack access to any mobile phone, Dewaki volunteered to use MeraSMS's specialized voice care reminders to guide the 12 mothers with their pregnancies and infant care. By organizing weekly self-help groups and providing support to the mothers, she is our voice on the grassroots and has helped us build inclusive communities of women connected to vital maternal care information.
In 2017, Dewaki also volunteered to be our community ambassador and help us identify eligible mothers and connect them to beneficial maternal health facilities and grant-making schemes such as the Janani Shishu Shuraksha Karyakram. The initiative entitles all pregnant women delivering in public health institutions to absolutely free and no-expense delivery. All expenses relating to delivery in a public institution are borne by the government. Under this initiative, a pregnant woman is entitled to free transport from home to the government health facility. Entitlement includes free drugs and consumables, free diagnostic, free blood, free diet for the duration of a woman’s stay in the facility. However, due to the information gap and structural barriers, most of the urban poor mothers still lack a sustainable access to life-saving schemes like JSSK, and people like Dewaki help us make it possible for such mothers to achieve quality maternal health for themselves and their infants.