National Lutheran Health & Medical Board
'Martin Luther Bhawan'
95, Purusawalkam High Road
Chennai - 600010.

Phone: 044 - 26432454, 26480933
Fax: 044 - 26431144






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NLHMB » Programs



Our awareness programs are designed to address the specific needs of carefully selected target audiences. During the past one year these programs have been conducted for various target groups such as Students, Factory Workers, Mahila Mandals (Women’s groups) and Teachers. In all 6351 students including students from 11 schools and 7 colleges were reached through such programmes which included appropriate presentations, discussion forums and interaction with expert resource persons. Similarly 751 factory workers in 10 factories were covered through a concise seminar on awareness and prevention methods.

2800 women were provided with HIV/AIDS awareness with active participation in the programs women’s self help groups in the community and women’s fellowship groups in Churches. To further enhance grass root level competence local NGOs were given practical refresher training at our centers and the initial program organized by them after the refresher training was monitored by our team in order to help them improve their post training performance.

Similarly 210 Teachers working in the TELC Schools were put through a well conceived orientation program to help in the identification of peer educators. These programs have resulted in the confederation of Indian industries (CII) recognizing us as one of the key NGOs to conduct further training programs in HIV/AIDS awareness for industries. The programs have also led to a considerable increase in the number of referrals to our clinic.

Special Programs

Capacity Building of Churches:

The training of 30,000 Pastors supported by the Government of Tamilnadu which was mentioned at the beginning of this document was conducted in a phased manner covering four phases It commenced with a program for Bishops who are heads of Churches and presidents and concluding with programs at the gross root level for church groups and congregations conducted by the trained participants under out supervision. The event resulted in the publication of a training module for church workers and pastors which has been widely appreciated and well received.

Awareness for persons with speech and hearing impairment:

We were provided with the opportunity to conduct a meaningful and relevant awareness program for the people with hearing and speech impairment. It was a learning experience also for us in a sense that we were able to understand how highly vulnerable such persons were to the problem of HIV/AIDS due to their inability to communicate with the outside world. It was a challenging but a worthwhile task to communicate with about 170 deaf and dumb youth in sign language on this all important issue of HIV/AIDS. There was a very interactive discussion following the presentation and we are in the process of planning more programs with such uniquely vulnerable groups.

Training of Trainers:

Since the number of people requiring awareness and other HIV/AIDS related services is very large it is absolutely essential to train adequate numbers of competent trainers who in turn help train others to provide the required services. With this end in view 22 Nurses working in various mission Hospital were specially trained in the care and treatment of HIV/AIDS patients. 10 youth leaders from AELC and MPLC were trained during a 3 day communication workshop to conduct awareness programs in their respective localities and among peer groups.

Rehabilitation of Abandoned Women Living with HIV/AIDS

The worst affected by the epidemic are women living with HIV particularly those who have lost their husbands to the disease. These are usually widows who live through an unending nightmare receiving blows after blows: victims of poverty, illiteracy, social evils such as dowry and a system of marriage where there is neither the power to make decisions nor the freedom to express their will even in terms of intimate physical relationship with their husbands. Most of the women are originally infected by their husbands after the death of their husbands they are not only rejected by the family of the husband but abandoned by even their own parents and siblings. They are forced to fend for themselves and their children who may also be infected. Most of them have no skills to get jobs. They have to take care of their children and also the cost of treatment. Added to all these women to given them an opportunity to regain hope and live with dignity enjoying for the first time in their lives the freedom to make decisions. Sustained counseling for motivation and empowerment combined with skills building programmes for income generation are the main activities of this rehabilitation centre. The income generating programmes include making of candles, soft toys and sambrani(incense sticks).

In addition to this, routine health care and health education to deal with their post infection problems are provided by the Gurukul health team.

The success of this rehabilitation centre has encouraged NLHMB to expand the model and replicate it based on locally appropriate programmes in Rajamundry and Guntur centres. Such programes may include a printing press run by the women living with HIV, a vegetable farm, a tailoring unit to produce linen for health care units. Additionally a computer training centre for their children may also be set up.

Home based care

Home-based care has become an increasingly important part of our work. The stigma attached to HIV/AIDS & the non-availability of hospitalization facility, makes Home Based Care an important modality of care. We provide home-based care for three reasons. These are to care for terminally ill patient, to train the family members at home to render care for the bed ridden and finally to reduce the burden of heavy expenses during hospitalization. A team has been formed consisting of a social worker and two PLWHAs to visit the houses of the other PLWHAs to encourage them and have a positive interaction with them. More than 200 PLWHAs have so far benefited from this service.

Advocacy and Networking

It is recognized that wholistic and concerted action is required to respond to the challenge of the HIV epidemic. Information sharing and joint action is a key strategy in this response. The Aids Desk has initiated successful campaign for Access to treatment and care and the Rational use of Antiretroviral Drugs. These campaign have helped many people living with HIV/AIDS. The Desk has a good networking with Church leaders, Positive Networks, NGOs, Government  organizations. It helps us to learn more from each other and share useful information.

Targeted Interventions

Work with the high-risk groups like Commercial Sex Workers(CSWs) transgender (Eunuchs) and MSM yet another major activity of the AIDS Desk. Most of the other NGOs are involved in education prevention and promotion of condom use but there were no centers offering testing and care. AIDS Desk has accepted the challenge of providing counseling, testing, treatment and rehabilitation facilities to the high-risk groups. The social workers and field staff have established good contacts with CSWs Eunuchs and MSM and encouraged them to come for the support group meetings. The response has overhelming and encouraging. More and more CSWs and Eunuchs began to attend support group meetings, and have come forward for counseling and testing. These groups have highly appreciated the services offered by the AIDS Desk. Programmes are being conducted among these groups to encourage behavioral changes, correct use of condom etc.

Day Care Centre for Orphans

Our work with the HIV/AIDS patients and their families for the past 16 years has brought to our notice the plight of the orphan children, who have lost one or both their parents and have no choice but to stay with their aging grandparents who are unable to take care of them. The children are also subjected to discrimination as other children do not play with them and are not allowed to attend the school. We are in the process of identifying and establishing long term purposeful and relevant programs that would help the children grow in self confidence and with dignity to face their future.

Snegidhi - Centre for Women Empowerment

Snegidhi Rehabilitation center was able to witness to the first graduating ceremony of trainees on February 10, 2007.Certificates were distributed to the first batch of trainees for offset printing, tailoring, Computer application – Chennai. The printing unit is doing printing of greeting cards, wedding invitation, visiting cards, letter heads, brochures, hospital cards and so on. The tailoring section is getting orders to its full capacity. Now they are involved in stitching uniforms for Ewart School.




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