RESEARCH AND INTERVENTION

Intervention among MSM & FSW in Chennai
Funded by: TamilNadu State AIDS Control Society (TANSACS), Chennai

We Indian Community Welfare Organisation (ICWO) with the technical support of Tamil Nadu State AIDS Control Society (TANSACS) work for STI/HIV/AIDS Prevention among MSM (Men having Sex with Men) &. FSW (Female Sex Workers).

Our MSM & FSW Intervention has shown clear indicators that it has created positive impact among the MSM & FSW community in Chennai. The major indicators are increase in risk perception, increase in condom usage in each and every encounter and decrease in misconceptions. The acceptability of the intervention was increased within and outside the community.

ICWO believes in non-stigmatized approach and non-discrimination approach among MSM & FSW, which will take the intervention to more success.

Comprehensive Prevention to Care Continuum Project (DIC & STI Model)
Funded by: AIDS Prevention and Control Project (APAC–VHS–USAID), Chennai

Indian Community Welfare Organization (ICWO) with the support from APAC-VHS-USAID Project to implement STI/HIV/AIDS programs among female sex workers and people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIV) in Kancheepuram district. The primary objective of the project is to provide comprehensive prevention and care services to female sex workers, and PLHIVs in six blocks of the district. The key activities of the intervention among female sex workers (FSWs) include: behavior change communication through outreach workers and peer educators; increase access to condoms, STI treatment, HIV testing, care, support and treatment services; psycho-social counseling and support; and community mobilization activities.

Since the interventions are primarily in a tourist location, ICWO has also involved tourist guides and hotel/lodge boys as volunteers to provide HIV/AIDS education to potential clients and in distributing condoms. Periodic advocacy with pimps, brokers and police is a regular feature of the program which has helped build an enabling environment for behavior change and in reduction of violence against the female sex workers.

Intervention among Female Sex Workers in Tiruvallur District
(Funded by: Tamil Nadu AIDS Initiative - TAI)

ICWO with the support of Tamil Nadu AIDS Initiatives (TAI-VHS). Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to implemented a project titled STI/ HIV/AIDS Intervention with female Sexworkers in Thiruvallur District. The project started in July 2004.The intervention is targeted for 1,500 female sex workers.

This program aims to increase the quality of the life of the marginalized communities of sex workers, both male and female. Our efforts towards prevention of transmission of the disease are based on the power of the marginalized community to: Perceive the importance of life, Enhance their self confidence to face life and generate high self esteem to enjoy life.

Link Workers Scheme in Tiruvallur District
Funded by: AIDS Prevention and Control Project (APAC–VHS–USAID), Chennai

Indian Community Welfare Organization (ICWO) with the support of APAC-VHS-USAID Project to implement implement Link Workers Scheme in Thiruvallur district.

The objectives of the Link Workers Schemes are to:

Create an enabling environment for PLHAs and their families by reducing stigma and discrimination through work with existing community structures/groups, e.g. Village Health Committees, SHG, PRI, etc.

Reach out to HRGs and vulnerable young people (men and women) in rural areas (as defined in Section 1.3 above) with information, knowledge and skills on STI/HIV prevention and risk reduction.

Establish inter linkages between gender, sexuality and HIV and bring into focus factors that enhance vulnerability of young people and women, both in HRGs and the general population.

Intervention with children of Sex Workers to prevent them from indulging in the same profession:

In TN there are about 90,000 sex workers who earn their daily bread through regular or occasional practice. When taking a look at Chennai City, based on the ethnographic study done by ICWO with the support of WHO, it is estimated that about 6300 women, are engaged in this work. So far no constructive or comprehensive welfare measures are taken up for this particular group in south India. Due to repression, stigma and taboo attached to sex work, prostitution in Chennai is largely underground, hidden surrounded with secrecy and fear. The sex work industry has reached to repression in many ingenious and creative ways to circumvent existing laws and keep enforcement agencies at bay. The sex workers are among the most repressed categories of the women.

ICWO
has started the UDHAYAM project with the support of ACTIONAID INDIA from May 2001. The project is mainly working for the children of sex workers who have been neglected in the society for a long period. One of the main problems the children face is that they are not able to continue their education due to lack of motivation and poor economic condition. Keeping this in mind ICWO has planned and implemented various developmental activities.

UDHAYAM has organizes various activities like Micro level planning, Formation of children forums, Health camps, Exposure Visits, Skills building programs like arts and Crafts training, Street play training, Puppetry, Sports & Cultural competition, Yoga & Meditation classes, etc for children and Formation of parents forum, Parent children meet, Forum facilitators training, Motivational camp, Legal rights training and Training on alternative employment etc.for the sex workers.

SAMARPAN is a street play team consisting of 8 Children of Sex Workers (All are sex-workers children’s). This “SAMARPAN” will perform street play on various social issues (Child rights, women’s empowerment) through skit, folk dance like Kummi, Kolattam & Karakattam.

SADHANA - As part of our programme I.C.W.O. has adopted a methodology called “Mentor Concept on Education” and it is functioning under the name of SADHANA. This SADHANA is a study centre in which Children of Sex Workers are identified, motivated and referred to this centre. This centre has one mentor (who is a sex worker) who helps the children in their studies.

CHILDREN FORUM - The children forum is formed in each area. At present there are about 350 children in thirteen forums. Each forum has a facilitator and a deputy facilitator nominated by the members of the respective forum. The facilitators and the deputy facilitators are trained by the staff and by resource persons in the field to lead their forums in the right path. The staff of the Udhayam project closely monitor the forums while conducting the monthly meetings, motivate the each and every member to participate in the meetings, and motivate them talk of the social issues that concern them.

YOGA - As the Children of Sex Workers are neglected and ignored in the society, they create an aversion towards the society by which he / she turns out to be an anti social element. Since Yoga plays a major role in molding the mental and physical status of a human being. ICWO has imparted Yoga training to 30 children in the first batch aiming to change their attitude, life style and make them think of a constructive goal to build their future.

EXPOSURE VISIT – The Children of Sex Workers are taken on an exposure visit once a year to a distant place like Vedanthangal, Mahaballipuram etc and once a month they are taken to the Banks, Post Office, Police Station, Library, Valluvarkottam, etc., to let them observe and see what they learn in books and also to expose them to important places which will enable them to reach such places without difficulties. These have lead to the habit of Savings among children in Post office and use the local library.

CULTURAL AND SPORTS MEET
– The organisation conducts cultural and sports meet every half yearly to provide them an opportunity to enjoy and participate in competitions. This meet also helps to identify the talents of the children and encourage them promote their talents. The identified children are given specialized training through professionals in various fields.

EAGLE EYE INTERVENTION (EEI) – The EEI is implemented to identify the adolescent children and educate and create awareness in them to prevent them from the clutches of traffickers. Since girl children have more changes of taking to the profession of their mothers they are given special attention. They are encouraged to continue schooling and obtain special coaching through Mentors. Counseling is also provided at times of necessity.

They need to be empowered to enjoy their rights!

Download

Assessment reserch of sexworkers and their clients in Chennai

Annual Report 2009

One day strategic planning Meet For Sex workers in Chennai

Two day strategic planning meet among young MSM in chennai