He blow cigarette smoke towards my face and said yes, "I am vaccinated, but not vaccinated from all the diseases this society is having nowadays,starring like I am the Alien from Mars.This is, one of the challenges S.M faces while working for the betterment of the society and its health.
The social process is slow, very slow, It takes time to evolve societies and the attitudes of the people living in them.
Learning something new might be difficult, but unlearning old patterns is really difficult task; people and organisations,working for social cause must have patience.
Society is a mixture of people with different views, and opinions. A social worker has to deal with them on daily basic. Sometimes doors are shut right in your face while you are talking to them.
Sometimes a specific fraction of the community makes you feel like a woman of less dignity just because you stepped out of your house `in this Patriarchic society and choose to work with males.
Social work requires you to talk with every gender and people of every age, caste, and ethnicity.
Community is a diverse group, different backgrounds and upbringing, and with their individual thought patterns.
In some areas, you are treated as the deity and in others as Devil.
For us it's nothing less than a blessing if we get a smooth doorstep to sit, and get data, under the shade of tree, otherwise bring your own umbrella-like me.
The story does not end here, Sometimes we have to walk from the narrow streets with garbage
and sewage water overflowing, but knocking each door, walking and jumping from one doorstep to another, and at the end of the day inquire each other about whose foot got blister or allergy?
Here you have to relinquish your Narcissistic nature and Ego to work smoothly as a Social mobiliser. Be like water or fertile land, that benefits others.Water Changes its shape, modifies itself and always brings prosperity to others.
Second important thing is In Rome, do as Roman Does.
Prioritise community: A social mobiliser job is a wholesome package, even before dressing yourself up for the day, you will have to consider the area and the people you are going to work in. Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown. No theory of my dress my choice applies in the field, Whether it is heat wave with 49 temperature, or not it is better if you r dressed as per the culture you are working in.
There are times when you have to sit and work in The Temple of Kohli village with equal dignity and respect as your own respectable place. Inclusiveness and unity helps us a lot in social sector.
Above all, the vehicles we are using are as warm as a clay oven ( Tandoor). I seriously have lived in this quote, you never know how strong you are, until being strong is the only reason you are left with.
The vehicle remains under the scorching sun for hours, its leather seats made you scream from the inside however, you have to remain calm outside. Yes there are dozens of blisters pimples you get as a reward. I have seen people carrying talcum cooling powder with them. After all, you have to work with no excuse at all.
In previous pictures I have seen Madam Sumera Daheri, and sir Razzaque going through the same challenges, they continue working for the betterment of the community. There are pictures of them working enthusiastically in COVID pandemic, heavy rains, moving from stinky drainage water, but carrying boxes of essentials and edible for the people and providing them with dignity at their doorsteps.
I have seen Mr. Umrani Making no excuses about the logistics facilities or vehicle, if he has to reach the office or represent HANDS in any social event, he would not mind sitting in the vehicle that collects waste material/ recycling material. But he will reach there at time. Such valuable traits made him a role model, the more down-to-earth I see my mentor is going for his love towards social work, the more his status has raised in the sight of his team.
In all these challenges if we the soldiers on the ground got some moment to laugh together after a hard day, at least we deserve that, even the security personnel in high alert always had a chit-chat in a light mood at the end of the work. One must not confuse a friendly, tension-free working environment with non-seriousness. Teams are achieving, despite all hurdles. After a Whole day of work at least a good selfie with the cute community kids surrounding us made us feel like yes we did it, accomplished our task today. It strengthens our relationship with the community we worked with.