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Sustainable Slum Development Plan

To equip slum houses w/ floating devices & emergency items within easy reach so that flood victims can sustain themselves & signal for help

Photo of Swapna Bellare Balsekar
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EXPLAIN YOUR IDEA

Background: On 26th July 2005, Mumbai experienced the heaviest rainfall in a 24-hour period; and this was a record breaking event for India since 1974. Threat to public life, water contamination due to overflowing sewage systems and deaths due to drowning were some of the after effects of the disaster. The death toll was high mainly because the victims did not have an immediate help during the crisis and/or could not sustain themselves till the help arrived. Idea: The sustainable slum development plan is to equip houses with easily accessible flotation devices, emergency items, buoyancy vests/life jackets that are conveniently located in and around houses. The plan is scalable since it does not change the existing infrastructure or requires building a new one. Examples include: Life jackets, arm floats, float planks, rubber tires that are pinned onto door entrances, roofs. Life jackets come with emergency items such as whistle/horn; mirror for signaling aerial rescue vehicles; and hand cranked and solar energy flash light. Using air beds, or existing beds insulated with floats that serve as floating planks for children. Flotation device made of empty plastic bottles and that hang outside each house. Having these kits readily available in their living space will help flood victims to protect themselves independently; signal for help and evacuate the flood site in a quick turnaround.

WHO BENEFITS?

Beneficiaries: Nonprofit organizations, community services, urban planners, disaster relief groups i.e United Mumbai (https://www.unitedwaymumbai.org/disaster_relief.htm) can benefit from sustainable slum development plan. Implementation: This plan can be introduced in densely populated urban slums where people need help during hydrological disasters.

HOW DOES YOUR IDEA TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE CONTEXT OF URBAN SLUMS AND CLIMATE CHANGE?

It is nearly impossible to rebuild a new infrastructure in Mumbai's densely populated urban slum; thus government organizations (i.e. United Way Mumbai) focus on preventive efforts (educational workshops) and/ or post recovery efforts (rehabilitation and counselling). The Sustainable Slum Development Plan takes a different take -- helping the victims in real time, just before the help arrives. Thus giving more power to the community and the people while they are coping with the disaster! As cited from the United Mumbai home page (https://www.unitedwaymumbai.org/disaster_relief.htm): "In an event of a natural disaster United Way of Mumbai's top agenda is as follows: Create a disaster relief fund Provide emergency relief in terms of food, shelter and clothes to the victims Rehabilitation, reconstruction and resettlement Diversification of livelihood support base Strengthening community level coping mechanisms to deal with future disasters Disaster preparedness workshops".

IN-COUNTRY EXPERIENCE

  • Not yet

EXPERTISE

  • I do not have experience working in a sector related to my idea

GEOGRAPHIC FOCUS

  • This idea is meant to inspire - I hope someone else takes it on!

TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOURSELF

I am a consumer psychologist and passionate about applying consumer research in creating innovative products that simplify people's life!

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Spam
Photo of Shane Zhao
Team

Awesome to see you back for another challenge Swapna! Great provocation on providing slum communities with emergency evacuation kits. Perhaps this system can be a shared community resource that multiple families have access to within designated parts of the neighborhood. It'll be interesting to explore if any implementing orgs have been testing similar strategies on the ground.

Spam
Photo of Swapna Bellare Balsekar
Team

Of course! Always my pleasure to participate in OpenIDEO.
Surely, I want to see how other countries have managed to create easy access to survival kits etc during crisis. It's all about quick easy and sustainable help to victims.

Spam
Photo of Sarah Basemera
Team

Swapna, great idea am loving every bit this would be great if modified to the simplest mobility as part of the package for unaccompanied school going children in Africa to help them cross through the floods, my worry is how applicable it can be in the slums themselves, there's hardly space even for an individual to walk through the walk ways are very small with lots of corners.

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