Location: Dhanbad-Delhi-Kolkatta National Highway No. 2 Crossing, Jharkhand
Partner: TCI Foundation
About the Project
Project Kavach is a national HIV/AIDS prevention programme adopted by NACO in letter and spirit, for long distance truck drivers and helpers across National Highway 2 to 9. The major components are behaviour change through FGD with special emphasis on IPC (inter personal communication), mid-media activities like street play, video Show, exhibition and health game, Khushi clinic services with aim to provide general health services, treatment of sexually transmitted infections, counselling and referrals to VCCTC for HIV screening , condom promotion and community mobilisation.
Truckers as a group have higher rate of HIV and STI (11 per cent to 23 per cent respectively according to one survey in South India) than the average male. HIV prevention programme focused on truckers have been in place for the last decade or so. However the mobile nature of the population and the highly fragmented structure of the Indian transport industry makes it impossible for any single standalone intervention to establish a sustained relationship/dialogue with the population, no matter how creative the behaviour change messaging at single location may be. Truckers are not a homogeneous population - they encompass at least nine major ethicalities/region. There are also substantial differences in the duration of time truckers spend away from home. By virtue of the routes they travel, long distance truckers spend a longer contiguous period of time from home than do short distance regional truckers. They also have the potential to take the epidemic from the southern to the northern states over a longer period of time. It is implicitly assumed that regional /ethnic differences, together with difference in duration of time spent away from home contribute to the degree of vulnerability of HIV.
The organization GPVS has been the winner 'Gold Standards' for three consecutive terms 2007-2009.
Project Kavach has a unique and innovative approach to HIV prevention amongst the mobile trucking population. The goal of this project is to arrest the spread of HIV among long distance truckers in India.
The specific objectives:
- Adoption of safer sexual behaviour and practice by long distance truckers through behaviour change communication (BCC) strategy.
- Promoting use of condom among long distance truckers through improving access.
- Reducing the incidence of various sexually transmitted infections (STI) among long distance trucker though appropriate clinical intervention.
Behaviour change communication through FGD and IPC: The programme uses an innovative peer led dialogue based methodology for interpersonal communication. The peer consists of current and ex truck drivers and helpers. They have been recruited and trained and deployed across the programme.
Synchronised and thematic mid media: Recognising that low self-esteem is an underlying cause for high risk behaviour among truckers the programme aims to enhance health seeking behaviour promotes practice of safer sex and enhance uptake of medical service at the programme owned Khushi clinics through street play and IEC booth with health games.
Condom marketing: The programme is marketing condoms to the truckers primarily through non-traditional outlets. Outlets owners are trained to conduct condom demonstration and are provided IEC material to help promote clinic cervices.
Treatment of sexually transmitted infection: The programme owned and branded Khushi clinic is the visible manifestation of the programme at each intervention location.