Poor health pushes people and households into poverty, in part, by reducing household labour capacity and increasing medical expenses. Social protection measures by government and private entities that provide food and nutritional security, housing, employment, income, and insurance, are therefore critical for the marginalised to achieve good health and well-being.
Our focus is to generate demand and facilitate access to social protection schemes and identity documents, because this supports vulnerable communities in their journeys to achieve better health and well-being.
We integrated our learnings in Social Protection from working with People living with HIV, and other populations at risk of contracting HIV, into all of our work - directly with people, supporting partners (enabling access within their communities), and influencing how programmes and policies are delivered. We have demonstrated that with appropriate use of social protection, it is possible to improve health outcomes and we are happy to share our experiences and expand the impact.
We have worked on the best ways to create demand among the poor for various schemes that can improve their lives, and have tailored these schemes to meet the needs of the communities. Supported by UNDP, we tested and developed models for NACO, where 900% returns were delivered in eight months. Four different models for enhanced social protection access, reached 19,000 people in three states. We facilitated employment for key affected populations, and people living with HIV, to identify solutions and better understand the challenges.
Our innovations support grassroot organisations to facilitate social protection for their members. Prior to, and during the pandemic, we provided assistance to partner organisations, so that farmers, artisans, fisherfolk, transpersons, men who have sex with men, women in sex work, etc. get the benefits of various schemes that they are eligible for, including health insurance, pensions, and subsidies.
During the period between 2013 and 2015, we created a learning site for Social Protection in Bengaluru that built capacities of community organisations to serve their members better, by ensuring member access to social protection. Experiences from this site were shared widely. With our belief in the power of information, we developed a portal for social protection that brought together comprehensive information about 200+ schemes on one searchable website.
We have helped the communities by reducing their vulnerability to poverty through social protection. We were able to reduce the vulnerability of 1,21,000+ people across five states, by generating demand, facilitating access, and building the capacities of local organisations. Between 2014 and 2017, we supported 74 help desks in 50 districts to generate benefits of over INR 15 billion in the hands of the community.
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Work Areas to explore our approach and initiatives in more detail.