WA Indian Docs is proudly associated with CINI Australia. Inspired by Child In Need Institute India, CINI Australia was established in 2009 in Sydney to help improve opportunities for India’s Women and Children.
CINI Australia is a not for profit registered as a charity and governed by its board. CINI Australia is supporting community development programs, programs for children affected by HIV, maternal and child health and education centers for children of Kolkata’s slums. All these programs are founded on the empowerment of women and sustainable development.
CINI Australia chose to work with Child In Need Institute (India) because of the quality of its work, the committed and skilled staff, its years of experience and the high regard for its work from within India and other International Aid organizations. It is a non-aligned, non-religious and an all Indian NGO.
Australia has been involved with Child In Need Institute, India since its foundation. In 1974 Sister Pauline Prince, a Loreto nun and nutritionist and Dr Samir Chaudhuri, a Bengali Paediatrician came together to find a solution to severe malnutrition and high death rates of women and children in Kolkata. Dr Jennie Connaughton visited CINI India in 1975 and again in 2008. She witnessed the growth over its 35 year history and returned to establish CINI Australia.
An excerpt about CINI Australia in the very words of Dr Jennie Connaughton.
Jennie’s Visits to Kolkata – 34 Years of Change
Dr Jennie Connaughton is a GP in Western Australia and co-founder of CINI Australia.
“In 1975 during a year off medical school I went to Thakupurkur, West Bengal. There I joined Dr Chaudhuri, Sister Pauline and a team of Indian men and women from all backgrounds, educations and religions working together out of a small school building. Their resources were minimal. Health education formed the foundation of the community development that was just beginning.
Young mothers, chosen for their leadership qualities were trained to deliver basic health care and education. Women learnt about locally available, affordable foods and how to provide basic hygiene and prevent diseases. They saw that these interventions make a difference. Mothers watched with relief as their babies weights increased and they gained strength and reached their childhood milestones. The health workers taught their neighbours about health, diseases prevention, nutrition and immunization.
I was struck by the commitment and wisdom in CINI’s philosophy. It was initiating real change in the villages and slums. Community leaders were involved with the planning for their village programs. Women were empowered through education and health care to change the opportunities for their children and the next generation.
In December 2008, I returned to Kolkata and met those whose lives had changed. They had attended CINI’s education centers for children of sex workers and from the slums. These men and women had become the dedicated teachers in CINI’s programs, knowing that education and support from CINI gave them many opportunities.
CINI is now widely recognized and respected NGO, providing Health worker training for CINI, the government and NGOs. Its programs are at the leading edge of community development and often a model for Government planning.
CINI builds collaboration between villagers, communities, local government and services. Women are given a voice and the skills to contribute to management of their villages and to create a path out of poverties for their communities.
For more information or to contribute to this work please visit the website http://ciniaustralia.org