Student Dissertation

Agency : Participatory Learning Approach; Perception Mapping; Transect Walk; Resource and Social Mapping

Objective : The main objective of this study was to assess the current scenario of Health, Water and Sanitation in the slums of North and South Delhi by using PLA tools and techniques. More specifically the objectives of the study were to: • Identify overall health problems affecting men, women, and children • Identify barriers in accessing health care services • Identify issues related to water and sanitation

Background : Participatory mapping is an interactive approach that draws on local people’s knowledge, enabling participants to create visual and non-visual data to explore social problems, opportunities and solutions. PLA (Participatory Learning Approach) was used to conduct a qualitative survey in urban slums of Delhi. PLA involves local people and outsiders from different sectors and disciplines. It is a way of learning from and with community members about their life and community as an integrated system.

Methodology : The study was based on qualitative analysis of the data which was collected from 30 slums based on PLA tools and techniques like Perception Mapping, Transect Walk, Resource and Social Mapping. Slum selected were the most vulnerable and issues related to Health, Water and Sanitation were deeper and pertinent. A PRA tool kit was prepared consisting of details about how to conduct PRA and having guiding questionnaires for Perception Mapping, Transect walk, Resource and Social Mapping.

Findings : On analysis, it was found that the principal diseases affecting men, women and children were Tuberculosis, Leucorrhea and Diarrhea respectively.The people living in slums were facing more problems related to water and sanitation. The mother and children were utilizing the services provided by Anganwadi centers but there were some barriers in accessing the health care from hospitals. The poor behavior of staff, unavailability of medicines and distance to health facility were some of the main reasons of not utilizing the health care services. In some slums there was no water supply from Jal Board and people were mostly dependent on tankers and borewells compromising with the quality of water whereas in areas where the public stand points were available the problems of irregular supply and contaminated water were present. The sanitation facilities were very poor. There were no toilets in some slums and if present, most of them were defunct. Toilets were very few and those that existed were filthy, broken down and was not usable. Lack of cleanliness and unavailability of water in CTCs makes people of slums practice open defecation. The participatory mapping helped in identifying existing issues related to Health, Water and Sanitation in urban slums of Delhi. Furthermore, a map produced in such a way can be used as a basis to take decisions in regard to sustainable project interventions e.g. which problems are the most important and require most attention. Information complied in such a way needs further research and complementary information in order to take a good decision where to start with implementation tools.