Community health facilitators

  • Health education
  • Health financing
  • Water and sanitation
  • Nutrition intervention
  • Entrepreneurship

Community Health Facilitators
Healing Field’s flagship program harnesses the power and passion of women to create change. Women are chosen from marginalized and underprivileged areas to participate in a 6 month training program, followed by a 6 month internship. This program gives them knowledge and skills to build healthier communities. They are trained in basic first aid and illness prevention so that they are not only a source for important information, but can act as a first responder for minor health issues. Moreover, CHFs receive compensation for their work in the internship. They create their own livelihoods, separate from their family. The confidence gained as leaders in their community and money earned builds newfound independence and agency.

Our CHF program currently runs in 10 states in India as well as Indonesia.

Health Education

Community Health Facilitators lead group meetings and practice one-on-one
dissimilation of valuable health education. Some of the topics they cover include:

  • Personal and environmental hygiene
  • Reproductive and Prenatal Health
  • Vaccinations
  • Common illnesses
  • Women’s, Men’s and Geriatric health

Health Financing

One of the most significant barriers to healthcare access in the villages we work in is the cost of healthcare. The CHF helps her community to finance their health expenses in manageable and affordable ways.

Health Savings Groups

Health Savings Groups allow communities to pool resources and fund their own health care expenses. A group of women save fixed amounts of money each month, and the resulting pool is available as a loan to members and their families. Membership also grants discounted services at a network of hospitals. The CHF facilitates this group’s formation and bookkeeping.

Microfinance loans
They are educated on CASHPOR subsidized loans, and can assist community members with attaining these loans. These loans can be used for water purification machines and construction. CHFs also offer financial literacy classes for a fee, so that individuals enter into these loans with knowledge of their responsibilities and the necessary techniques to pay them back.

Water and Sanitation

Toilet construction

CHFs are responsible to promoting toilet construction and use in their communities. They facilitate government programs and finding micro-loans in order to build the toilets. Their role as an agent of change is fundamental for promoting the use of the toilets. They ensure that people know how to use the toilets and are motivated to use them for health and hygiene reasons.

Soak Pits
CHFs encourage the construction of soak pits in order to return wastewater to the ground, without the danger of standing water. Soak pits help reduce mosquito borne illness and recharges groundwater. CHFs educate their peers on the necessity of soak pits, demonstrate building techniques and help community members with construction.

Nutrition

CHFs advocate healthy and nutritionally rich diets as a prerequisite for a healthy lifestyle. They also educate on diseases related to food intake and nutritional deficiencies. CHFs teach their peers how to use nutritional supplements to treat and prevent nutritional deficiencies in children.
They also promote kitchen gardens to make nutritionally rich foods accessible and affordable. Excess fruits and vegetables can be sold in village to add to the family income. CHFs lead by example by building these gardens in their own home, and by leading initiatives and lending expertise to the construction of more in their communities.

Entrepreneurship

CHFs receive training on starting and running a small business, and are encouraged to sell a basket of health and hygiene products to their community members. By undertaking this extra responsibility they provide affordable products that are otherwise difficult to access, and create a livelihood for themselves. CHFs help their peers learn how to use these products, and create community behavior changes. This opportunity to earn an income is a source of pride and independence for the women. Read more here (link to health and hygiene product page)

Achievements

Total Women trained-4150
Trained this year-99

Villages effected-4150

Total people given health education – 622500
people given health education this year – 14850

Total number of Hand Wash demo for School children – 41500
Hand Wash demo for School children this year- 990

Number of toilets constructed due to CHF facilitation this year- 10412

Total people referred to hospitals- 8300
No of people referred to hospitals this year – 198

Total no of women referred for institutional delivery – 583

Total no of kitchen gardens- 5125