Ekam Foundation

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Ekam Foundation: Healthy Child Healthy Community

Chennai, ÍndiaÍndia
Year Founded:
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
$100,000 - $250,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

A not-for-profit organization which works to bring in the holistic well being of children and mothers by bringing in a confluence of CCPP (Community, Civil society organizations, public sector & private sector). Our aim is to complement the Government health system and not replace it.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

What if every individual of the community i.e., the public, government and relevant stakeholders feel responsible and take ownership to improve the health status of Children and Mothers?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

India is known for high maternal and child mortality and most of these deaths happen due to preventable causes. Compromised quality of Government health care delivery and unawareness are the main reasons for this heartrending situation. Since underprivileged mothers and children are the most common seekers of emergency medical help in Government Health facilities, they have fallen prey to this miserable situation.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

To provide Direct Medical Support: 24/7 helpline attends to emergency medical requests for children and adolescents by bearing their medical costs, facilitating uptake of Government Insurance and Ekam's assurance schemes for Health. 2.Communitisation: To bring in community institution building i.e.,CCPP together to perform both service providing role and advocacy role to improve Health. Bridging the gaps in the existing health system (fills HR gaps, maintains Medical Equipments, skill up-gradation for Health staff, raise health awareness among public from rural grassroot level). 3.R&D: Advocating policy recommendation for the public health system. Also monitoring and suggesting corrective measures for Ekam's ongoing programs.


1. The prestigious 'Narishakthi purashkar award' from the President of India (March 2015) 2.Global Health Award from New York
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

A new born infant just 3 days old admitted at a remote village Government Hospital in Tamil Nadu had severe breathing problem. When Dr.Sai (founder-Ekam) went there on a casual visit, saw a Junior Nurse manually pumping oxygen to his lungs. She advised the Nurse how to do it as she was doing a wrong technique. She found that the antibiotic was not given ( due to lack of drug supply) & had no ventilator too in that Hospital. Immediately with the doctor's and family consent, made arrangements to shift the child to the closest Private Hospital with ventilator support, 2 hours drive from that Village. This timely shift saved the Child’s life. Similar to this, 1000's of children have been saved by one of such activities of Ekam.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

 8693 children were supported in the following categories:- • Hospitalization - 2071 • Medicines - 2516 • Lab Investigations - 3383 • Equipment - 698 • MRI & Others - 25  3,50,000 children have been screened through 1340 Paediatric camps  More than 150,000 people have been sensitized on health awareness.  From 16% of overall working medical equipments, Ekam scaled it up to 96% Sick New-born Care Units in2 states.  Tamil Nadu has shown decline in IMR and MMR and is likely to reach MDG target. Projected Future Impact (by the year 2025):  Achieve the target for Maternal and Child Mortality in India- to reach the target of MDG in all the states wherever it will work/working.  increased health awareness among the community  Improved quality of Gov health care delivery  Private hospitals will provide low cost treatment  Better happiness index in the community

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

1.From Tamilnadu, Ekam's work has extended to other states of India, i.e., Chattisgarh, Maharashtra, Uttarakhand and and is looking for Pan India/world involvement. 2.Widening affordability for poor: Involves Private medical sectors to provide no/low cost medical treatment. Ekam's health assurance scheme (Paripoorna Bala Suraksha--PBS) will provide additional health coverage wherever government health insurance scheme is limited/not applicable. 3. PBS with Livelihood entrepreneurship- identifies area wise livelihood projects for empowerment of mothers and youth to become entrepreneurs.

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

A)Communitisation-CCPP model itself will bring down financial burden on Ekam B)'PBS health assurance scheme with Livelihood-Entrepreneurship' empowers mothers & youth (a part of Communitisation) C)Business Model 1: Knowledge Institute provides skill up-gradation of Private care facilities. D)Business Model 2:Enrolling in NSDC and bringing in skill development, knowledge and employ-ability of women & youth. E)Corpus building for Ekam.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

There are few number of organizations which work for the welfare of children, but Ekam has a unique 'CCPP model' (Community, Civil society organisation, Public sector and Private sector). This Model aims at liaising all the above sectors together to work for the well being of mothers and children. The founder wants every individual of CCPP to take ownership and accountability right from the grassroot level to improve the health status of mothers and children. Thus, Ekam strives for self obsolescence i.e.,once the community takes over the responsibility 'Ekam' may no longer be necessary.

Founding Story

During Dr. Sailakshmi's (founder) study period in Paediatrics, she encountered the distress of parents who were forced to watch their child die due to lack of funds to continue treatment. Due to the poor doctor-patient ratio of 1:50, 2-3 sick babies would die every day. Babies would die due to absence simple medical equipments, lack of technical skills by the health staff. These were the experiences that etched the power of life and death into her heart. The experiences of systemic inefficiencies, resource deficit, and child neglect resulting in preventable deaths brought Dr Sai to a decision, “We cannot lose one more child.” In 2007, Ekam, was birthed as a project.


As of now, the team has adequate staff with relevant qualifications in position with regard to the magnitude of the project and all the activities of the project are being carried out impeccably. The current team includes the visionary and founder of Ekam foundation, Dr Sailakshmi, a peadiatrician. Supporting her and the 'Ekam Soul Force Team' would be Trustees and experts ( consultants and advisors) in the field of finance, operations, HR and community activities. List of experts: • Mr BG Menon – Operations, Social audit , Financial and MOUs/agreements approvals • Mr Ravindran, Ms.Prathibha, Mr.Bala – Finance and Statuatory Management • Mr Francis Somerwell – Governance and Systems building, Knowledge, Research- Managing Central Data Repository System and Teaching/Training , Government Liaoning , Community Engagement, Corpus building, CSR-Fundraising. Marketing, Communications , Networking and Fundraising • Ms.Sashikala - HR, Staff empowerment, Social audits, Training and Processes Strengthening. Knowledge Transfer will be done by Soul Force CAD- TN (Full time): This team includes expertise in social work, public health, management & communication: (Mr Rajesh, Mr Radhakrishna, Ms Neeta, Dr Ishwarya, Mr Charles, Mrs Sujitha,Mr Thiruppathi, Mr Mohan) The Soul Force CAD team will work under the guidance of the expert consultants (Part time) Mr.Francis, Mr.Bala, ( Supported by Dr.Vasantha Nair ( Paediatrician), AMS solutions (Medical equipment Technical supporters) , MSS consultant(HR), SRS consultant (Finance), Mr Chetan (IT), Nologo (Marketing), Swami Associates (Service tax), Mr Srinivasan) Audit is done by Advisors (Honarary): Mr BG Menon, Mr Ravindran, Mr Pratibha, Mrs Sashikala Supported by Board of Trustees: Mrs Latha Rajan, Mr Muthu Krishnan, Ms.Radhika Jain, Mrs Garima Agarwal, Dr.Sai Lakshmi Governed by External Auditors: • Statuatory and Financial Auditors: Kandasami Associates and Co. & • Social Auditors : CSIM and Abinavgram In the future more staff will be recruited depending upon the extent of the program.
CO-CREATION IDEA: Please offer a brief description of how you imagine a win-win partnership with Boehringer Ingelheim to better serve unmet needs in health. (Hint: Please mention the underlying business model envisioned that would make such a partnership sustainable.)

Our concept is to inculcate the feeling of responsibility in every individual to take ownership to improve the wellbeing of mothers and children. This will be achieved through our powerful and robust CCPP model (by bringing together Community, Civil Society, Public sectors and private sectors together (communitisation) to produce synergistic results in the field of Health). So if we win the partnership with Boehringer Ingelheim, we will have the platform to enhance and fasten our services to serve the unmet needs in health such as affordability, accessibility, accountability, attitude and quality of health care to produce a self sustainable model within the community itself thereby eliminating the dependency on fending organizations.

NEEDS: Based on you response above, please specify which of the following resources, operations or expertise by Boehringer Ingelheim you imagine leveraging to actualize the proposed co-creation opportunity. Please check all that apply. (Hint: while financing is often critical to scale, we are also interested in understanding what other assets or expertise could be leveraged).

Relationships/New Contacts, Marketing/Communications Support, Human Resources, Technology Expertise, Public Policy Knowledge, Access to Capital.

EXPLANATION OF NEEDS: Please explain your choices in more detail.

Marketing/ Communication support will help us spread our CCPP model across the world breaking geographical boundaries. Health Technology support may help us fasten our process by using relevant health management technology. Also Relationships/ New contacts will enable us to build network worldwide and we wish to transfer our knowledge and our practices to wherever unmet needs are prevailing. In addition, relationships and communication / Public policy knowledge/ would enable us to generate innovative ideas and recommendations for generating a robust health system and put them in practice.

OFFER: What are the main assets you may contribute in a co-creation partnership with Boehringer Ingelheim that would better serve unmet needs in health?

Deep understanding of an unmet need in a specific market/context, Access to and established trust with customers/beneficiaries, Insights into behavior change, Other.

FOCUS AREAS: Which of the following best describes the main focus of your project? (select all that apply)

Improving the affordability of healthcare (e.g., microinsurance, reducing the economic cost of care), Increasing physical access to healthcare to people with restricted mobility or restricted access (senior people, people with disability, remote or difficult areas, etc.), Holistic solutions that work across the entire care continuum (including education, prevention, detection, treatment, management, follow-up), Models that engage other industry players (e.g., nutrition, athletic, mobility organizations)., Remote care solutions for health management, treatment, and diagnosis.

Please share what your organisation and Boehringer Ingelheim will Co-Create together
Please specify what your Co-Creation will result in:

If you selected "other" above, please explain:
Please provide a 1-2 sentence summary of your Co-Creation idea
How does this project link to the core mission of your organisation?
Beyond social impact, how does this project link to Boehringer Ingelheim’s core business?
What are the specific inputs and actions that each side will contribute to this Co-Creation idea based on each of your unique competencies and experiences?
Please describe the potential revenue model for this Co-Creation idea.
What possible risks or challenges do you foresee?
Is there anything else you would like to share about your Co-Creation idea?
How much input do you hope to receive from Boehringer Ingelheim?

If you selected "other" above, please explain:
Besides Boehringer Ingelheim, what other types of partners might be valuable to carrying out your Co-Creation idea, and why?


Non-profit organizations are doing great jobs. They should be rewarded with some benefits if not with financial help. They are uplifting the development of the nation by remaining in the shadow. Child and mother healthcare are in the miserable condition in some of the third world country. And India is one of them. Thousands of child today even dying of starving for several days. Some are Mal-nourished and some are not getting the basic health supplement to survive. The government should take strong action regarding this matter and every citizen should take active participation in this movement.

Child Care