The Camel Cart, one of the best modes of transportation in the desert areas of Western Rajasthan. Seeing the importance of camels in the desert, the team of Dhara Sansthan has come up with an innovative idea to use them as strength. The areas/villages under the desert regions generally face accessibility issues. It took hours to reach the nearest healthcare facility. Due to the sand dunes, the DHARA Sansthan’s mobilization vehicles were unable to reach most of the villages in the Thar region of Rajasthan. Such settlements still have residents who use camel carts for their daily errands. This has motivated us to stick to the tried-and-true techniques. After speaking with inhabitants of these villages, our team came devised the creative strategy to use Camel cart.
The approach was to mobilize and encourage for the vaccination. Camel Cart was launched in consultation with state government officials that aims to address the needs of the last mile and enhance project reach to the most remote hamlets.
The program was able to reach and eradicate the myths and mythological beliefs that were developed around the COVID 19 vaccine, such as reduce their lifespan, natural immunity concerns etc. though Camel Cart implementation. It shows that community based cost-effective models like use of camel cart in this case, still play a strong role in attracting and convincing masses towards a particular objective.
In a day, Camel cart covers 3-5 hamlets, along with ANM and cultural awareness team to mobilize the masses and vaccinate. Deployment of Camel Cart is done for 5-6 days in six blocks of Barmer districts to promote COVID-19 immunization and awareness in the communities. Through this it enabled us to reach 37,456 populations. Wherein, this strategy of deep penetration using a camel cart helped us administered 18,054 inhabitants across all age groups.
We DharaSansthan, feel proud that the initiative actually mobilized thousands of people to come forward and get vaccinated. Since it was the very unique initiative to run vaccinations through the Camel Cart Service, it has made a tremendous impact in the lives of people belonging to the most deprived section of Rajasthan.
The program was a great success, as it managed to reach people who had been neglected due to the lack of transport facilities in the remotest parts of Western Rajasthan and at the same time made some societal impacts like, encouraged community to take full ownership and made champions among the locality who can sustain the project efforts.