I am officially halfway through!
I am beginning the empirical research component of my fieldwork. I will be focusing on counseling provided to families after a child is placed back in the home after running away. The next two weeks I will complete a literature review and narrow the scope of my research. As of right now, it doesn’t appear that there is an evidence-based intervention being used for the counseling provided to families after repatriation. I am doing subsequent research on appropriate clinically significant interventions, that are evidence-based, that Childline staff can use as part of their repatriation process. I will also explicitly identify why this would be important to incorporate into their practice. It’s still early on in the fieldwork process, so we shall see what direction it goes into!
I did not go on any site visits this week due to my supervisor being out of town. After speaking with my supervisor on Friday, it appears I will be going to the Childline Call Center (CCC), Child Welfare Commitee (CWC), and the CCDT next week so see the other functionalities of the Childline system.
Jainism (pronounced ‘Jane-ism’):
I recently learned about India’s “Jainism,” which is a group of people who believe in non violence towards all living things. Most of India is vegetarian as it is, but “Jains” take vegetarianism to the next level by not eating any vegetables or fruits that are “hurt” during the harvesting process. So anything that has a root and is fully taken out of the ground when harvesting, like potatoes or garlic, they won’t eat. They will eat things like apples, for example, because you don’t destroy the entire crop by eating from it. I’m really bad with handling spicy foods, so my roommates said if you order something off of the “Jane” section of the menu, it won’t be spicy. Good to know!
My roommate was telling me about the Dahi Handi (Butter Festival) that happens once a year. The festival IS meant to symbolize the story of the god, Krishna, when she stole a pot of butter. The festival is in August or September every year and pots of “curd,” or yogurt, are hung at very high heights throughout the city. People create human pyramids to try to break the butter pot. If they do, they earn a large sum of money. While people are climbing and trying to reach the pot, gallons of water are poured on the participants to try to make the climb more difficult. Participants are called, “govindas.”
There are a couple things that don’t sit well with me here. First, there is a water crisis in India, and most people don’t have access to water or run out of water regularly (my flat included), but this government-funded festival is wasting hundreds of gallons of water that could be used in alternative ways. Also, children, being lighter and smaller are often used in these festivals to get to the top. As a result, there was a high amount of child deaths resulting from this festival. Maharashtra banned children under 12 years old to participate in 2014, but to the extent the people abide by this is uncertain. Regardless, there continues to be an extremely high mortality rate associated with this festival. Also, the festival also doesn’t support the secular declaration of the Indian government, which is a bit hypocritical.
I had to go to the clinic because I had been feeling sick for a few weeks and wanted to make sure it wasn’t something serious. The on-campus clinic was a female and she checked my tongue, blood pressure, poked my stomach, and asked about my symptoms. She said I had a “stomach virus” and gave me a prescription. I went to the pharmacy and was given the medication. The medication was taken out of the original packing and just given in the internal, silver packaging. Whatever they gave me, and whatever a “stomach virus” is, I feel a lot better so thankfully I don’t need to go home early!