Ujwala (towards a brighter future) is a three year (2017-2020) programme supported by MAC AIDS Fund. The programme has been designed on the findings of our Abhaya programme (2013-2016).
The programme aims to mitigate and prevent gender based violence (GBV) against female sex workers (FSW) and provide wider sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services as an entry point to strategically improve their uptake of HIV services including testing and treatment. After serving 4500 FSWs and 300 regular partners through Abhaya, in Ujwala, the programme goes beyond to not only including regular partners, younger women in sex work (below 24 years) and women in traditional sites, but also reaches out to unreached women such as those who solicit sex work through unconventional modes using internet, mobile phones and beauty parlors. The programme is being implemented by community based organisations in Delhi, Gujarat and Telangana.
The project is addressing gender based violence (GBV) through Women initiating New Goals of Safety (WINGS) module and helps women in sex work to develop a personal coping plan as well as group support through Crisis Response Teams (CRT).
Important stakeholders including healthcare providers, police, lawyers, media personnel and regular partners of sex workers will be sensitised at the site level, and an annual advocacy event will be organised at the national level.
Objectives of Ujwala are:
• Improved uptake of HIV services by FSWs
• Improved response to prevent and mitigate GBV against FSWs
• Improved support and service access for FSWs below 24 years