Female Infanticide Prevention programme (FIPP) - Salem

Female Infanticide Prevention programme in the selected four prioritized blocks of Salem District, namely, Tharamangalam, Omallur, Konganapuram, and Idapadi with the support of IMPLICADAS, Spain, since September 2007. It is a programme that aims at eliminating the practice of killing female child and bringing attitudinal change among the parents to be gender-sensitized to bring up their girl-child with due recognition. The staff team comprises of eight field officers and two counselors. The goal of the project is to sensitize the whole of the population in the identified four blocks to be gender-sensitized and to protect the girl child from infanticide. The project has been collecting the list of antenatal mothers in the selected four blocks, since start of the first year. A data base has been created with the information collected and the counsellors also meet them regularly till the delivery of the child. In case of female children, they follow the family for eighteen months period even after the delivery.

The project takes efforts to sensitize the community in general and the family members of ante-natal women in particular on the importance of girl children. The project counselors counsel the ante-natal mothers during their difficult times to solve their issues to protect their female children from being killed by any other member of their own family. It brings attitudinal change among the spouses and the in-laws of the mothers at risk to protect the female infant. The field staff educates the women in Self-Help Groups on gender issues. The youth population in the target blocks is trained on gender issues and on the life skills. The project organizes skill training programmes on various trades to the women and motivates them to become self-employed. A women support centre is attached to the project which addresses the issues of women and provides guidance and counselling services. The project has formed a Street Play Troupe and they perform plays in the villages on gender issues, importance of education to women and against the practice of female infanticide. The general population is being sensitized on the gender issues.

The project has identified women with girl children and form Self Help Groups. The SHGs are linked with banks to access the credit facilities. The members are encouraged to undergo Skill Training Programmes organised by the project and other institutions. The Capacitated Staff facilitates Life Skills Education among adolescents from the villages of the four blocks. The adolescents in the age group of thirteen to twenty are being motivated to attend the training. Gender issues are also included in the life skills programme and the adolescents are sensitized on key gender issues. The programme is conducted during the evening hours for two days and it lasts for four hours. The adolescents who hail from the target blocks in the age group of thirteen to twenty are trained on life skills and encouraged to join the Gender Clubs. The project forms gender clubs and these clubs are named as “SAMAM” which means equal. The objective of forming gender clubs is that these groups will serve as volunteers in the target area and the gender clubs are to raise the awareness level of youths on gender issues and to bring up them as gender sensitized citizens. The project also plans to use them in preventing the practice of female infanticide.