The amount of arsenic in water is extremely intensive in many parts of West Bengal particularly in the East and Southeastern parts. Some 30 million are exposed to drinking water exceeding the national standard for arsenic (50 parts per billion or 0.05 mg/1). Amongst these there are millions drinking water with arsenic levels as high as 300-500 ppb or even more. SHIS first intervened arsenic mitigation programme in the Bhangar – I and II Block in South 24 Parganas District. Gradually we extended our arsenic mitigation programmes in other arsenic effected areas across the district and even to Assam. The main objective of the programme is to provide sustainable quality testing facilities for drinking water to the community.
Interventions made in the community:
- Extensive education awareness through Behavior Change Communication (BCC)
- Periodically screening all tube-wells
- Community people are now aware about arsenicosis. They do not collect water from tube wells having arsenic. They know where to go for treatment for arsenic caused diseases. Children know about arsenic and its remedies.