Sama considers health a fundamental human right and believes this can be achieved by strengthening public health system, regulating private sector and curtailment of multiple forms of discrimination based on caste, class, gender, religion, ethnicity, ability and sexual orientation.
Our commitment is to integrate the gender, caste, class and rights analysis within the wider context of other social relations in order to emphasize the complexity of existing power relations that result in exclusion and marginalization. The usual disease-doctor-drugs approach to health is not sufficient to meet the health needs of the people, especially that of the marginalized and disadvantaged communities. There is a growing need to develop a broader understanding of health which includes health care services and determinants of health, and initiate interventions that enable and empower people to have greater control over their physical, social, and political environments, all of which influence their health.
Sama’s objectives are to:
- Identify emerging issues and building recognition of priorities related to health of women, young girls and marginalized in collaboration with community based organisations and networks.
- Build evidence on the impact of existing policies and programs on the core health concerns of the poor and marginalized in order to influence the existing discourse and practices.
- Engage with health systems to develop leadership, operational capacity and mechanisms for improved design, delivery and monitoring of quality, accessible, health care services, with pro-active people’s involvement.
- Provide adolescent girls with a variety of opportunities for creative self-expression to enhance their self-confidence, and build a positive self-image as women.
- Sensitize men towards women’s issues and motivate them to bring about changes in the unequal relationships and exploitative arrangements in the family and society.
- Acknowledge the collective experience and existing knowledge of women and traditional healers, traditional birth attendants and integrate these in local health practices.
- Undertake advocacy initiatives for health issues to create public awareness and network with organizations and coalitions to build consensus and inform policies.
- Strengthen civil society for evidence-based advocacy through capacity building, networking and information sharing in order to increase state and social accountability and influence effective policy implementation and regulation.
- Provide platform for discussing emerging issues, devising strategies and planning interventions to help address issues at local, regional, national and international levels.