A Decade of Service to Humanity

Booklet Review

HPT - A Decade of Service to Humanity Impact Study 2010 to 2020

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HPT’s Impact Study (2010 – 2020)

In ancient China, there existed a system that focused on primarily promoting practices for good health rather than the eradication of disease. In it, the role of the physician was to instruct the general public in practices for good healthy living. If someone fell sick, this was considered a failure on his part, and his remuneration was consequently reduced. While such a system may not be practical today, we can nonetheless recognise the wisdom of its underlying principles. Good health is more a question of promoting healthy practices rather than treating diseases. It is not a question of “either/or” but rather one of priority. Established in 2010, the Health Promotion Trust (HPT), after a decade of service, has gone about evaluating its work, and has published a book in which it systematically assesses its work among the marginalised of Raigad district, Mumbai district and Dharavi Island.

For the prospective social worker, this makes interesting reading. The book is consistent in its pattern of evaluation. After outlining various initiatives in each region, these have been evaluated. They have empowered communities to take responsibility for their own health, rather than be dependent on hand-me-downs from above. Barefoot health workers are key to such an initiative. Arogyasevikas, their training and assessment have been outlined. There is a definite emphasis on Nature cure remedies. Nature provides us with a variety of herbs and plants that are not only curative, but also serve as a preventive to ailments that often tend to become chronic because of unhealthy practices.

The Booklet is a systematic study of the impact the HPT has had in ‘preventive healthcare intervention’ on the lives of people, especially the marginalised. Anyone interested in participating in their outreach, looking for opportunities to serve the community effectively by raising health awareness, or simply just wanting to lend a helping hand in whatever way they can to this organisation would do well to get hold of this book. It is available free of cost to the genuine volunteer. Further information can be obtained from the Director, Fr Rocky Banz, who may be contacted at the Health Promotion Trust (Administrative Office) – 2444 0121 or via email: healthpromotiontrust@gmail.com

Christopher Mendonca

  • the Examiner