Monday, August 17, 2015

New life-saving children’s medical clinic opened in the Mumbai slums

Mr Sharma, Shravan's father cutting the ribbon of the
opening of the Shravan Health Center with Mr Nimrod
Assouline of the Consulate General of Israel in Mumbai
 and Dr Ravikant Singh of Doctors For You
16 August 2015, Mumbai – A brand new medical clinic for children and mothers of the Kalwa slum was opened last week, thanks to the working partnership between Gabriel Project Mumbai and Doctors for You. The Shravan Health Center, which will provide medical services for a community of 200,000 people, including thousands of children and hundreds of prenatal/postnatal women in Kalwa, was named in memory of Shravan Sharma, an 11-year-old boy who died last year due to lack of accessible health care in the slums.

“This clinic is a life-saving initiative for the children of the Kalwa community who until now had no access to basic medical care,” said Jacob Sztokman, founder of Gabriel Project Mumbai that spearheaded the initiative. “Shravan’s death was a wake-up call about how many preventable deaths there are among children in the slums. This clinic will be transformative for the entire community, saving lives of children and promoting basic health and medical care.”

The clinic, which was made possible with the support of the American Jewish Distribution Committee, The Estelle Friedman Gervis Family Foundation, Altico Capital India, Awakening Women’s Institute, Modern Trousseau and Sundara Fund, opened with a festive ceremony on August 13 where Shravan’s father cut the ceremonial ribbon. The event was also attended by the Deputy Counsel General of Israel in Mumbai Mr Nimrod Assouline and his wife Dana, JDC representatives from Israel and India, REAP directors, Shravan's teachers, doctors, nurses and other health professionals and over 80 members of the Kalva slums community. (The Shravan Health Center needs your help, please donate here:

The Bhaskar Nagar slums in Kalva is home to a wonderfully vibrant but 

underserved community. The Shravan Health Center is the only clinic in the

immidiate area which will provide accessible health care for

women and children in the community of 120,000 people
The slums of India are also home to over seven million children under the age of 14 who are growing up in poverty with limited access to electricity, clean water, food, and educational opportunities. Slums have overcrowded communal bathroom facilities and many have open sewage that contaminates sources of clean drinking water. The lack of adequate sanitation, nutrition and safe water has significant negative health impacts. It was estimated in 2002 by the World Health Organization that around 700,000 Indians die each year from diarrhea. According to the New York Times, 42.5% of the children in India suffer from malnutrition. The World Bank, citing estimates made by the World Health Organization, says that about 49 per cent of the world's underweight children, 34 per cent of the world's stunted children and 46 per cent of the world's malnourished children, live in India.
Mrs Anju, Shravan's teacher spoke about Shravan
and the importance of the health center in his name

The clinic will help offset this harrowing reality by providing services including: sick visits, minor acute care, treatment for burns and injuries, immunizations, health and nutrition education, prescription assistance, preventive checkups, and referrals to specialists. Other services include curative services, preventive health check-ups, growth monitoring, periodic de-worming, Vitamin A and Iron Folic acid supplementation, and minor procedures like cleaning and dressing The clinic will also provide free vaccinations and immunizations, some inexpensive or free medicines, and will have a special fund to subsidize advanced treatments that need to be conducted outside of the clinic, such as blood tests and x-rays. An estimated 80 % of the children will be managed with available facilities. The remaining 20% with more serious issues that require referral or hospitalization will be assisted during their protracted procedures.

Doctors for You, a partner organization in this project that has had great success in providing comprehensive health services for underprivileged populations in Indian slums for the past seven years, offers curative and health promotive services such as general health, immunization, family planning, dental, ophthalmic services, tuberculosis prevention and control and physiotherapy and neuro rehabilitation. In two other slum areas where DFY has opened clinics, the organization has achieved 100% immunization coverage among children below five years of age in the area.

The outside of the Shravan Health Center in the slums of Kalva. 

The clinic will provide health services to thousands of children as well

as antenatal and neonatal care to hundreds of women. The list of 

services include: General Health Check ups, AnteNatal Care for pregnant woman,
Immunization for children, DOTS (TB) services, Family planning services, 
Growth Monitoring clinic for children and hygiene education. 
The clinic will also has its own pharmacy dispensary!
“The impact of this clinic will be enormous,” Mr Sztokman added. “At GPM, we have been providing nutrition and literacy for children for the past three years. But when Shrawan died, we realized that this is not enough. We also need to be providing basic health care. This triad of health, nutrition and literacy is the formula necessary for real transformation and giving these beautiful children a real chance at life.”

The Shravan Health Center is a two-room center open five days a week, between 9AM-2PM, with regular evening operations Monday, Wednesday and Friday 6PM-9PM to meet the needs of working parents. The clinic will be staffed by a pediatrician, a general practitioner, a nurse and an administrative manager. It is estimated that the staff will be able to service an average of 45 patients a day, approximately 200 patients a week, or almost 10,000 women and children a year.

Additional hygiene and health workshops will be run for the children and community in general from
Representatives of the JDC International and JDC India
 receive a tour of the Shravan Health Center
the clinic after operating hours. The focus of the workshops will be hygiene, disease prevention and promotion of healthy living. The community outreach team made up of local women who will be trained as health representatives in the slums and led by a social worker, will go house to house giving vaccinations, and providing basic health-care education. Partner organizations will work hand in hand with the community outreach team to encourage families to utilize these services.

The Shravan Health Center needs your help, please donate here:

The doctors, nurses and other health professionals of Doctors For You with Gabriel Project Mumbai staff in the vaccination room of the Shravan Health Center in the slums of Kalva

Dr Ravikant Singh of Doctors For You speaks about the services provided to the community by the Shravan Health Center

The triad of health, nutrition and literacy is the formula necessary for real transformation and giving these beautiful children a real chance at life.” Jacob Sztokman GPM

A woman and child leaving the doctors office. Thanks Emily Rose Weinstein for the wonderful photography! See more of her photos of the opening of the Shravan Health Center HERE


  1. God bless this project! I'm so so happy to see such an important place become a reality. It was an honor to be there for the opening. Blessings of success for the clinic and may lives be changed and saved from it.

  2. nice job thanks for saving children's and poor people i am like you'r thought it is very good job.
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