We Can't Do It Alone , We Need Your Support

We Can't Do It Alone , We Need Your Support
To Provide awareness regarding Girl Child Education , Menstrual Hygiene ,Girls Toilet , Sanitation and Safe Drinking Water , to thousands of families to make there lives Healthy and Happier !!! Please Support Our Fundraising Campaign To Reach Out To 25,000 Targeted Families In 5 States of India PLEASE MAKE THIS PICTURE YOUR COVER PAGE JUST FOR A DAY AT LEAST ! DONATE & SHARE AT : http://igg.me/at/heeals

Friday, 20 May 2016

Humans damaging the environmrent faster than it can recover.

Degradation of the world’s natural resources by humans is rapidly outpacing the planet’s ability to absorb the damage, meaning the rate of deterioration is increasing globally, the most comprehensive environmental study ever undertaken by the UN has found.
The study, which involved 1,203 scientists, hundreds of scientific institutions and more than 160 governments brought together by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), concludes that without radical action the level of prosperity that millions of people in the developed world count on will be impossible to maintain or extend to poorer countries.
Water scarcity is the scourge of some of the poorest regions on Earth, the study f
ound, leaving developing countries increasingly unable to feed themselves, and causing hardship for millions of people. There appears little prospect of this dire situation being remedied, according to the UN, without radical action being taken.
Water sources are under increasing threat from population growth, climate change, rapid urbanisation, rising levels of consumption, and the degradation of lands that previously provided a natural replenishment of water resources.The study is intended as an aid to the world’s efforts to combat climate and other environmental threats .as it highlights the difficulties of improving the lives of people in developing countries and tackling global warming, while food resources come under continuing pressure.
UNEP found the rate of damage to the natural environment was increasing globally, despite concerted efforts to persuade governments to take measures to improve the condition of vital natural resources, such as water, land and the seas.
“If current trends continue, and the world fails to enact solutions that improve patterns of production and consumption, if we fail to use natural resources sustainably, then the state of the world’s environment will continue to decline,” warned Achim Steiner, executive director of UNEP.
He said the tools for improving the environment for millions of people existed in developed countries but were in danger of not being used.
The study, using decades of scientific data, found that basic measures to tackle some of the key causes of environmental damage were still not being taken. These included measures to reduce air pollution ,such as changes to vehicles ,the damage to marine eco systems which can have a huge effect on fish stocks on which hundreds of millions of people depend; and the degradation of land when modern agricultural method were pursued without regard to the longer-term consequences.Despite the recent global agreement on cutting greenhouse gas emissions, signed in Paris last December, global carbon output continues to rise. The report argues this will put a long-term strain on the ability of developing economies to feed their own people as the result of changes such as increased droughts and floods.
Climate change is exacerbated by the emissions of greenhouse gases from agriculture, including the leaching of nitrous oxide – a powerful greenhouse gas – from run-off emissions and incorrectly stored animal manure.
These sources increased by more than a quarter between 2000 and 2010, the report found.
Other problem areas identified in the report included glaciers in the Andes, which provide vital water resources for tens of millions of people, but which are shrinking as the climate warms.
In rich countries, these problems have built up over decades and centuries while economic growth was pursued at the expense of the environment. Subsequent efforts to remedy the environment have met with partial success. But in developing countries, the path of future development has more potential to change, which has encouraged international institutions to devise more sustainable growth pathways that are supposed both to alleviate poverty and preserve the environment. If they follow the same pattern of growth, then the danger of irreparable environmental damage will intensify, the study’s authors conclude.
They recommend an increased awareness of the environmental impact of development. For instance, exploiting water resources can be made more sustainable by recycling water where possible, and changing agriculture so that wasteful methods of irrigation are replaced by more efficient ones.
Developing countries should also change their methods of dealing with waste, the report found, so as to protect clean water sources and prevent the burning of solid waste in landfill dumps.
source:theguardian.com
picture :heeals 



Sunday, 15 May 2016

Soapbox Team In India


Finally Soapbox Team Was At HEEALS Office .

We Had A Great Meeting With Our Partner Organization Soapbox To Discuss How We Can Continuously Strive To strengthen Our Ties With Them .Proud To Be A Soapbox Partner!




































Friday, 13 May 2016

A Childhood Obesity Is A Risk !



As countries develop it is more than just their GDP that grows; it is also their waistlines. For India this growth could be more harmful than elsewhere as traditional factors clash with the new prevalence towards fashionable, imported food and drink.
The problem of Indian childhood obesity is particularly alarming with some estimates putting the growth from 2011-2016 as 16% to 29% amongst 5-16 year olds. The condition has severe consequences for children as it leads to the early onset of serious diseases normally associated with adulthood (high blood-pressure, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease) at a time when the body is ill-equipped to tackle. Indeed if the current trend continues the number of overweight or obese children across Asia could grow from 15 million today to 70 million by 2025. There are a number of key Indian factors behind this growth that can roughly be divided into internal and external forces.
The model that many economies strive towards is that demonstrated by the United States of America; famous for many things including, most relevantly, obesity. Although Indian levels are still far off those exhibited by the U.S., the lifestyle that is championed by the world’s largest consumer is certainly here to stay as demonstrated by two key market indicators; soft drinks and fast food. Soft drink sales within India have been growing around 30% per annum for the past three years and have been touted to continue at this rate for another four. Meanwhile the fast-food market is on course to double between 2013 and 2016 and, equally alarmingly, mothers are also moving away from the famed “old-fashioned” home cooking in favour of pre-packaged ready meals.
And then there are the factors unique to India. The key factors affecting childhood obesity are considered stress and lack of exercise. In a country as populous as India there is fierce competition to attend the highest educational institutions meaning children are placed under huge amounts of pressure from their parents to achieve success at school. Couple to this to the lack of playing facilities offered at many Indian schools, to let off some of this steam as well as exercise, it creates a dangerous combination where comfort eating is, unsurprisingly, often the result.
Furthermore, there has recently been a physiological link established between Indian genetics and weight gain; known as the “thrifty phenotype” hypothesis. This proposes that the relatively rapid change from food scarcity to food paucity has resulted in a metabolism ill-equipped to efficiently process the highly-calorific sustenance that has become common-place. Champions of this theory describe the Indian body type as smaller and flabbier than those found elsewhere after generations of constrained diets and thus resulting in higher likelihood of obesity linked diseases when exposed to a more affluent environment.

The factors and implications laid out above demonstrate that India could be worse at dealing with the change in household diets than other developing nations. It is surely a sign of its significance that this problem has reached the ears of Indian policy makers who are drafting legislation that will curb the TV advertising of foods rich in non-esterified fatty acids (fast foods)and sugar-rich drinks during the hours that children are exposed. There is also talk of imposing special taxes on such goods however, for the time being this is just talk. These are both promising signs but must be brought to fruition if the world’s fastest developing nation is to avoid a long-term health catastrophe emerging at the same remarkable rate.

-William Lewis

Monday, 9 May 2016

Anti Child Marriage Campaign

Anti Child Marriage Campaign; continuing our work to protect the education and health of girls in India here is our latest infograph. Another great reason to join #HEEALS!




Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Children & Drought


The drought currently gripping India has already affected 330 million people across a quarter of the country and with the relieving monsoon not expected for at least 7 weeks this looks set to surpass the recent disasters experienced in 2009, 2004, & 2002.Much has been written regarding this environmental crisis however the disaster is particularly severe for the youngest in society; one significant environmental shock can leave an irrevocable scar on a child’s development. The key areas at risk are primarily the child’s health and secondly the disruption to the child’s education.
There are two key influences wrought by drought on any affected child’s life; income and food, and changes in disease environment. Both the former and the latter are also linked a third significant effect which is disruption to a child’s education.In a country as hot as India drought is nothing new however due to the advances made in healthcare and particularly child-mortality the drought of 2016 will almost certainly affect more children than any other.
The most obvious impact will be to a child’s nourishment as lack of water affects not only drinking but also food supplies. Rural areas are heavily dependent on rain-fed agriculture for both sustenance and income. Villagers find themselves in a dangerous cycle; as crops fail they have less income to feed themselves, and also the price of replacement foods rises as wider-spread supply falls. There has been a growing trend of urban migration for men in recent years however the impact of drought conditions has also pushed women towards metropolitan areas in search of work to supplement the family budget. As a result children are left behind often to care for ageing relatives and sometimes putting their lives at risk to collect water from far-flung sources in the heat of the day.
With lesser levels of sustenance and greater exertion comes the threat of disease and infection as malnourished children are significantly more likely to succumb to illness. To make matters worse a paucity of water often leads people to drink whatever is available which is likely to be of poorer quality and increasingly rife with waterborne diseases such as diarrhoea and cholera. Children are intrinsically more likely to contract and succumb to such illnesses as their bodies are still developing.
Drought can wreak havoc on a child’s education as exams always fall during the hottest season.To compound matters, as Indian education is traditionally geared towards examinations (90% of grades are exam weighted),it is intrinsically the most crucial period of a child’s school year that is affected. Furthermore, in the face of such conditions schools in severely affected areas have been told to conclude the school year early to reduce the strain on water supplies. The smallest, rural schools are hit the hardest at a time when their pupils will be sitting exams that could affect the rest of their lives as they seek highly coveted places at the best schools.Once again, drought hits the poorest in society hardest and sadly it is these children who rely heaviest on education to provide them with a brighter future.
The crisis has certainly not been helped by the misuse of existing ground water in for short-term financial gains. Prominent campaigner Rajendra Singh has been particularly critical of the water-intensive crops (i.e. sugarcane) that have been grown in the worst affected areas. He has also noted that much of the worst offending farmland is under ownership of the political elites. The result has been a 72% drop in underground water sources across India, the highest depletion rate in the world.

Although coming at a heavy price, there is one possible benefit that can be reaped from such times; raising awareness for the value of water conservation. A number of schools and local communities in less affected areas have undertaken water saving schemes to benefit those less fortunate. Furthermore, it serves as a timely reminder of the Swachh Barat (Clean India) movement, particularly how is in everyone’s interest to clean India’s major waterways; the Yamuna and Ganges. We can only hope that increased attention and awareness to such worthwhile causes can be a by-product of what is clearly a humanitarian catastrophe.

Come Join our Green Earth ,Promote and Protect Environment Project .To Protect Place From Turning Into Drought . Let's Do It ! 

-Willam Lewis 
Picture -Heeals

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Indian School Bias !


With around 30% of Indian children attending private institutions, the Indian private education market is the largest in the world. This is hardly surprising given the population size but, for a variety of reasons, private schools are outperforming state run institutions despite recent study showing that the Government spends, on average, more than twice as much in educating a pupil. The key factors behind this imbalance are inefficiencies that have become imbedded in state schooling and efficiencies fee-paying schools have created. To lift the performance of their own schools issue the Indian government must take heed of both.
Most serious among the malpractices commonly associated with India’s free education are the attacks oneducation standards and teaching practices.Schools are accused not of completing the syllabi in the school year and the necessary equipment is not always available. Often much power is bestowed on individual teachers who have the ability to pass or fail their own pupils while offering extra-curricular tuition(for a fee). Teacher absenteeism is also rife and the authorities seem powerless to prevent.Additionally, there are stories of outright corruption including overcharging and bribes taken to admit or promote a child, or even issue qualification certificates.
The problems found in the provision of school infrastructure pose the most direct threat to a child’s education. A survey in 2013 found that of 780 schools across 13 states 30% were found to have inadequate toilet facilities and 60% had no playground. Given this it is hardly surprising how unfashionable it has become to teach in Government schools. Formerly a position of prestige and respect, teaching is now seen by many graduates as a last-resort career giving rise to a severe shortage and pushing the student:teacher ratio as high as 70:1 in extreme cases. The lack of mentorship or access to a professional network as well as antiquated career progression(often based on seniority rather than performance) are obvious changes the government must make to buck this trend.
Conversely, by operating in a private environment;fee-taking schools have learned to streamline their practices to remain competitive in a diverse market. Principles have far greater authority over their teachers and employment contracts include performance and attendance clauses. The teachers themselves are often less qualified so must strive to hit their targets to guarantee employment and command less salary, allowing the private schools to reduce the student: teacher ratios.
India’s stand out legislation on learning in recent years is the Right to Education Act (RTE) of 2009. This established free and compulsory education for every child between the ages of 6 and 14 and guaranteed 25% of places at private schools for pupils from economically weaker sections of society. The idea was to level the playing field for poorer students however, sadly this policy has had the effect of devaluing the education provided in state schools and, thus, exacerbating the superiority enjoyed by private institutions. Furthermore, the RTE included no provision for the improvement of the existing Government schools, embedding the problems outlined above.
However, the enforcement of this 25% has led to a number of malpractices being adopted by private schools where unfair financial barriers (high cost of uniforms or add-on admission and maintenance costs) are placed to prevent poorer students filling the RTE enabled places.  As a result it has been estimated that across India only 15% of RTE places at fee-paying schools were filled.
In response to these issues India’s education department has announced ambitious and far-reaching reform in two stages; peripheral and core. The first outlined fundamental infrastructure shortages that have been holding back Government schools and targeted 8000 new classrooms and 25 new schools are to be opened by the end of 2016 and a recruitment drive to employ 9000 new teachers. The core stage, yet to formally begin, proposes a radical change in teaching practices including a decentralisation of authority giving more powers to individual principles, incentivised contracts, and the creation of School Managers. And then perhaps most adventurous is the creation of a pilot “super-school” complex of 10 schools each specialising in different areas of education.

All in all it appears that the government has started to take note of the problems that have blighted their school system for a generation. Some issues (support for newly qualified teachers) are easier fixed than others (changing the mind-set that Government schooling is inferior) and in the meantime the private education sector will continue to innovate and dominate.

-William Lewis 
-Picture-Heeals