Editorial

T

hey have money for food or for medicine, not both,” a doctor is quoted as saying in our cover story in this edition of Horizons. The doctor was explaining the deathly dilemma facing patients without the means to access cancer care and treatment. Helping such sufferers is among the main objectives of the extensive and varied cancer care programme of the Tata Trusts.

Affordable, inclusive and high-quality cancer care are central to the model, which pulls together the preventive, the promotive and the curative to enable treatment for everybody. We feature three components from the model in the cover story: the building of two new cancer care facilities in Varanasi; the expansion of, and what this means for, the path-breaking Tata Medical Center in Kolkata; and a comprehensive community-based project in Assam. Collaboration is the most crucial ingredient in ensuring the success and sustainability of these initiatives.

Collaborations, especially with government agencies and institutions, are a dominant theme in most of the Tata Trusts’ programmes. The special report in this issue — on a community health undertaking to tackle ‘acute encephalitis syndrome’ in Uttar Pradesh — and our spread of feature stories highlight the fact.

The effort to enhance education outcomes in eight states; the rice fortification project in Gadchiroli in Maharashtra; assisting the Mumbai Police in setting up an archives; and the initiative, also in Maharashtra, to deliver justice to victims of violence — all of these are examples of partnerships that have borne social fruit.

Also on the magazine’s menu this time are two contrasting interviews. Magsaysay Award winner Bezwada Wilson speaks about manual scavenging and the degradation those forced to practise it have to live with, while Anita Raj, a stalwart at the University of California, San Diego, sheds light on developmental psychology, public health and sexual abuse.

A different framework of social development informs the piece by design strategist Deepa Prahalad, who argues for making design and innovation work for the benefit of all stakeholders. Similar in spirit, if not subject, is the opinion piece by the Tata Trusts’ Sugandhi Baliga, who raises a shout for India to begin a national discourse on happy and healthy ageing. And in Showcase, we look at how Antaran, a Trusts initiative, is helping Assam’s women-centric handloom sector.

Cheers and happy reading.

Christabelle Noronha

We hope you will help us make Horizons better with your valuable feedback. Please do write to us at horizons@tatatrusts.org.

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