#OpenPockets Cafe and Health in Jaipur?

I attended the event organized by Hidden pockets on September 28, 2018. I have never attended a meeting like this; and I have attended a lot of meetings as a part of my job. This was hands down one of the best meetings I have ever attended.

Kshitiz sharing his experience 🙂

The way this meeting was held, it is a great format, and everyone felt free to share without having any reservations. I work in the field of health; hence I am aware about abortion and have some understanding around the issues related to it.

I had an idea that people have a lot of confusions around abortion and its issues. But after the event I came to know that how little (even lesser than I had imagined) people know about it. People who live in an urban setting and came across as well-educated people also had many confusions about the issues around abortion.

This goes to show that how little we talk about these issues in our daily lives. It is great to hold such events in such a setting where talking about these issues is fun. It was very participative, and everyone felt free to speak. I also liked the vibe of the meeting as everyone was speaking without having the fear of being judged. A light-hearted conversation around an issue as stigmatized as abortion is really a breath of fresh air.

As a health professional, it made me realize that we do not have to be serious all the time. Just relax and talk about the complex issues that are less talked about. I strongly feel that there should be more such events in future. I congratulate the organizers to pull off such an event in a city like Jaipur where we rarely seen such events in cafés.

Article by : Kshitiz Sisodia, a development professional from Jaipur.

Mapping Jaipur and its reluctance to sexual health

Hidden Pockets Collective visited Jaipur as part of our mapping studies and went in looking for government hospitals in Jaipur. A lovely city  which is full of colourful people, we were really looking forward to this study. We visited Prayas, an excellent NGO working on the issue of Public Health and Medicines in Rajasthan and decided to seek their assistance before we started our mapping. This time, we wanted to cover different forms of public health facilities and understand how were people using facilities at different parts of the city.

Every time we ask someone for government hospital, people tend to tell us the name of biggest government hospital in their cities. It was the same case in Jaipur, as asked people around and did some search on internet we ended up looking at SMS Hospital and Medical College in Jaipur. It was conveniently located right in the middle of the city. It was crowded. We entered from Gate number 3 and went looking for sexual and reproductive services in the government , we were guided towards the Dhanvanthri department, Parivar at first floor in Room number 17.  It was right next to free medicine counter.

Then we headed towards a district hospital :Rukmani Devi Beni Prasad Jaipuria Hospital, located in Milap Nagar. We had heard that it had a One Stop Crisis Centre – Aparajita for rape survivors. It was a clean hospital which had a very good ambience for people. It was not at all crowded like SMS hospital and seemed like a good alternative for Sexual and Reproductive Health services. The images on the wall was a refreshing change from the normally sad looking walls of a hospital.

Post this, we headed towards Zenana Hospital, a hospital that was specifically for women and children. It was located right opposite to the Chandpole metro station. It was easy to locate though really crowded. Even though we were able to find services listed on various boards, we just could not find the rooms. We asked people around, even used the fancy not-so working info- booths, we just could not find the rooms for adolescent friendly health clinics, and other services.

We were really surprised by the number of posters for wifi in the different government hospitals. It seemed interesting that government was heavily promoting the usage of internet and technology in its various forms in the hospitals. Sadly none of them were in functional phase. 

Our last visit to Sanganer, which was bit far away from the city. We went there looking for a Community Health Centre, Sanganer.  A CHC is secondary level of health care and provide specialist care to patients referred from Primary Health Centres. A CHC is a 30-bed hospital providing specialist care in obstetrics and gynaecology according to the Indian Public Health Standards prescribed by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare in 2012. So we decided to find this CHC. It was a bit far and we realised nobody really understands the term CHC, but if we referred it as “Sarkari hospital”, we were able to evoke response.

We didn’t see any crowd there as well and we were surprised to see a clean gynaecologist room and a room for counselling for Adolescent Friendly Health Clinic. We also encountered a poster that read in Hindi “Surakshit Garbhapath” which meant Safe Abortion. We were so happy to see a poster providing such positive message in the middle of a small town in Jaipur.

We were really happy with the services available in the Community Health Centre and returned back to our bus ride to Jaipur. On our way back, we wondered about the reason for people to head to big referral hospitals in cities, wasting time and their resources when they have good services in their towns.

We do understand there is a lear gap between implementation of these policies, and also lack of interest on the sides of service providers in assisting people in these smaller health centres, but if we could de-congest the big hospitals and still make this a good opportunity for the service providers. It would provide a great deal of relief for the patients of the related area. Until then, these were some of the hospitals that we visited in Jaipur and generally had a good experience.

Aparajita – Center for Rape Survivors – Jaipur

One stop crisis management centre for woman – Jaipur

For people who have no clue about the One Stop crisis Centres, let me first explain what it is. One Stop crisis Centres were introduced to simplify matters for female victims and survivors of violence, where a number of institutions would be brought under one roof so that the victims and survivors wouldn’t have to run between institutions for redressal. The aim was to bring together the police, medical professionals and psychological counsellors under the same roof and attempting to make the victim’s relationship with these processes less complicated.
Hidden Pockets went to Jaipur and decided to visit Aparajita. Aparajita is India’s first One Stop Crisis Centre. It is in Jaipur and is completely operational. This centre is opened in Jaipuria Hospital (Rukmani Devi Beni Parsad Jaipuria Hospital ), JLN Marg, Milap Nagar, Jaipur, Rajasthan 302018. It is very easy to locate the hospital. One can use public transportation to reach the hospital.

The building Aparajita is located just next to the main gate. As one enters the main gate one can see the centre on the left. It was inaugurated in 2013 with an objective of addressing the problems of women facing atrocities. This segment is kept separated from the main hospital. One can see a huge board with Aparajita written on it.


Facilities:

When we visited Aparajita, we met one of the lady constable and a counsellor. The counsellor showed us around. We saw the entire building. It has a provision for medical help, legal help, counsellors and also police assistance. The counsellor told us that this centre is open for 24 hours and the staff works in shifts. They work from 8 am to 2 pm in one shift then from 2 pm to 8 am in the second shift. The staff told us that it is the responsibility of the centre to refer the person if required, If the person is badly wounded to a hospital which would help the person. From police department, they have 2 sub inspectors and 2 constables who are 24 hours active at the department. If needed the doctors from Jaipuria hospital also help them. They have around 4 counsellors who are also available 24 hours. They also have paralegal volunteers. In last 3 years, Aparajita has provided relief to more than 2000 women. The staff is really helpful and has a positive attitude. This makes the surrounding at Aparajita very positive.
Readers, if required kindly approach this place. This is for all of us. If we meet somebody who is in need of help, kindly keep Aparajita, Jaipur in mind.
Following is the Helpline:
Phone Number: 0141-2553763/2553764
Email: aparajitaweraj@gmail.com

Kindly spread the information around. These centres are establish in helping rape survivors and victims feel a bit more comfortable while dealing with the trauma and it is for the public. Let us try utilizing it and make sure no one goes through the torture.

#pleasurepockets walk in Jaipur

When you are a stranger in a new city, the best way to get a feel of your new neighborhood and to map out interests close to you, is by foot. This essentially means long walks through a maze of streets, buildings, bazaars and the works.

Many cities in India have a reputation for being ‘unsafe’ post sundown. Walks and vigils have been conducted across the globe by professionals, student bodies and others alike who, like us, believe that the streets (no matter what time of the day) must not be feared in any respect. These streets were made with a sole intention of public use in mind and if that purpose expires with the setting of the sun, it is lost and the forces in play that perpetuate the visage of it being unsafe automatically get the upper hand. This is what we aim to stop. Reclaiming the streets is more than just speaking out for our rights to use them at any given time, it is also about us debunking the myths that surround certain spaces. This is a problem that affects both women and men.

Hidden Pockets is back to its walking spree and this time we are busy reclaiming the streets of Jaipur. Join us as we walk the streets of Jaipur and enjoy these streets 😉