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Upjaas, the first-ever Tribal Leaders’ Collective for Children launched

Aug 18th, 2021 4:58 pm | By | Category: LATEST NEWS


(THE NEWSMAN OF INDIA.COM)
Raipur, August 18, 2021: “Upjaas”, the first-ever collective of tribal leaders and community influencers from across Chhattisgarh, was launched here today.The platform which means “mother nature”, is supported by UNICEF and Media Collective for Child Rights ( MCCR). The tribal leaders under the platform will promote COVID vaccination,and behaviours to promote health, nutrition and education in tribal communities.

Job Zacharia, Chief, UNICEF Chhattisgarh said that people respect the words oftribal leaders and follow their advice. “ Baigas, Guniyas, Pujaris, Sirhas and Vaidhyas are powerful and influential and opinion leaders in tribal communities. They play a powerful role in shaping attitudes, opinions and behaviours. We want these leaders to promote ten behaviours and practices to ensure health, nutrition, sanitation, education and protection of children.”

About 50 tribal leaders belonging to Maria, Madia, Bhatra, Muria, Dhurvaa and other tribal groups from across the Bastar region were part of the launch. LoknathBaghel, Chief Priest, Girola temple, Shankar Kashyap, Chief Priest, Thokapal, Lakman, senior Sirha, Darbahwere also present. The logo of the collective was also released during the launch.

Narender Yadav, Advisor to MCCR said that “Upjaas is a tripartite platform representing tribal leaders, media and UNICEF.” This is innovative as there are no such initiatives of this kind in the country.

UNICEF in Chhattisgarh has been engaging with the tribal leaders to influence tribal communities to seek basic and essential services related to women and children. They have also have been creating awareness on early registration of pregnancy, complete ANC, immunization, exclusive breastfeeding for six months and handwashing with soap at critical times.

UNICEF India has a history of partnering with religious communities of all faiths on a wide range of issues that affect children. Religious communities are uniquely positioned to promote equitable outcomes for the most vulnerable children and families. Their influence and extensive networks give them access to the most disenfranchised and deprived groups.

In advocating to protect children’s rights, to help meet their basic needs, and to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential, UNICEF engages with various influencers, policymakers, implementers, faith-based organisations and even religious and tribal leaders. These community influencers are uniquely positioned to promote equitable outcomes for the most vulnerable children and families. Their influence and extensive networks give them access to the most disenfranchised and deprived groups, those that international organizations and governments are sometimes less able to reach effectively.

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