The Community Engagement Centre’s community health workers (CHW) met Nazia on a visit to a local community. At the time, Nazia was very unwell – she was suffering from Hepatitis C. She sought treatment from several places, including a hospital in Hyderabad, however her condition never improved so she gave up treatment completely. The CHWs conducted a detailed dialogue with her about her experience of Hepatitis C and how free treatment is being offered at the nearby Primary Care Clinic. They urged Nazia to visit the clinic to get tested; if she had Hepatitis C, she would receive all the treatment necessary to recover.
Nazia took their advice and visited the primary care clinic. When the CHWs visited her next, she was very pleased to see them. Her tests were now clear, and she was HCV free. At the clinic, she had been attended by a doctor who was able to address why Nazia had been feeling poor, and was given medication for it. Nazia was so satisfied with her experience that she spread word of the clinic to her neighbors and fellow community members. Now, she is an active volunteer serving as a Community Facilitator for the CEC.
Through establishing relationships of trust within communities, the CEC aims to connect communities with relevant services and resources, empower them to take collective action to address their concerns, and develop a cadre of human resources who can serve as representatives of their own communities. This system of local ownership and trust allows other community members to learn about and avail valuable resources to improve the quality of their lives and facilitating healthy living.