We in Operation ASHA believe in inclusion, diversity, and equitable distribution not just of resources but of health solutions for all. To this end we are serving marginalized communities irrespective of colour, caste, creed, religion, political beliefs or socio-economic status. Our community health workers are the backbone of our organisation. They themselves belong to diverse backgrounds. They carry out the full spectrum of TB services for their own communities, in villages or slums, on mountains or islands, in hard-to -reach remote areas miles away from civilisation.
Crossing the 100,000 mark!
We are grateful to you for your unswerving support in the past decade. It’s because of you that in 2018 we have crossed the 100,000 mark, having detected and treated more than 100,000 TB patients, giving them health and dignity and subsequent economic benefits. TB treatment is a poverty alleviation programme. According to the government of India each treated patient gets an annuity of $13,395. Thus we have provided a total benefit of more than $1.39 billion to treated patients, and the country’s economy has saved an equivalent amount in indirect costs.
In Cambodia, serving with compassion:
Long time ago we realised that TB detection and treatment is an urgent need everywhere. In 2010 we started work in Cambodia. Today we are serving 17% of the population and treating 17% of all TB patients there. Our health workers go on boats from island to island in the Mekong Delta to carry out TB awareness and education, sputum collection and transport, and giving daily supervised medication for 6 to 9 months.
In Afghanistan, where people matter:
Three years back we started working Afghanistan where we received tremendous support from the National TB Control Program and ACREOD, a local NGO. We provided the training and the technology. Local Afghani people are given jobs as community health workers. I’m proud to say that within 2 years we exceeded our targets in Afghanistan and are now embarking on a much bigger project.
Projects in Tanzania:
Our project in Tanzania has had unprecedented results. Here our collaboration is with APOPO, an Ashoka Fellow, as well as Mkuta, a local NGO, and everything we do is embedded in the National TB Control Program of the country. This year we shall start work in Zambia, another country that is riddled with poverty and disease where the need is immense.
The world is one family. The biggest religion is humanity. These are the core principles on which we work. Thank you for being part of our lives. Thank you for your blessing and guidance that have supported us in this long and difficult journey.