Change when it comes, often tiptoes in quietly. As if unaware that we have waited centuries.
The video is about the meetings conducted between the ANM nurse and adolescent girls from nearby villages which was organized by Oxfam India and BVHA (Bihar Voluntary Health Association) to educate and sensitize adolescent girls towards issues of reproductive as well as maternal health.
Rama Biswas, the ANM nurse, is a woman with experience on her side. She brings up the topic of love and sex among the girls, and carries on confidently over the giggles and laughter of the group.
A part of conversation from the video:
“Do you know what this is?” Rama Biswas, the ANM nurse at the Health Sub Centre at Marwa Toli, Kishanganj, held up something wrapped in its plastic encasing.
“Yes, Ma’am,” a few adolescent girls answered. “This is a Copper T.”
Next she showed a packet of condoms.
“These are condoms,” a few voices answered. Kun-dum, they pronounced the word. “These are used by men.”
One of the girls elaborates on the use of condoms. Her voice is shy, yet sure. Another girl explains how Copper-T is used.
“Copper T helps us to create a gap between one child and another till the first child is a little grown-up and mature.” The nurse fills in details to make sure everyone understands how contraception works and why it is necessary to ask for it.
“It is not wrong to fall in love,” the nurse says, “But be careful who you fall in love with. Not someone who only wants to use you and then leave you.” “The one who is not obsessed with touching me is the person to choose,” one of the girls said.
North Bihar, in an area that is referred to as the “chicken neck,” a narrow strip of land on the map of India that has Nepal on one side and Bangladesh on the other. Most of the young women here are Shershahabadia Muslims, a community that had apparently been settled in parts of north Bihar and Bengal by the 16th century emperor, Sher Shah Suri.
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