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Know about Forbes W-Power 2021 listed ASHA worker - Matilda Kullu

Matilda Kullu from Sundargarh district of Odisha is a Covid Warrior and one among the strong women personalities in the country who have featured in the Forbes India W-Power 2021 list.

This W-Power 2021 list strives to feature women who have taken charge, coped with crises and scripted success. It is representative of women from diverse fields like business and science, entertainment to social impact and sports.

ASHA worker Matilda Kullu

Working as an Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) for Gargadbahal village in Baragaon tehsil of the district for the last 15 years, Kullu has been instrumental in bringing the healthcare system closer to the people.

As reported by Forbes India, Kullu starts her day early in the morning by around 5A.M, finishing household chores, preparing lunch for the family of four, and feeding the cattle before hopping on to her cycle to start her day with door-to-door visits.

It has never been an easy task for the 45-year-old who has faced many challenges such as superstition, casteism, and untouchability. When Matilda Kullu became an ASHA worker, she noticed that villagers used to visit 'tantrik' (witchdoctor) instead of consulting a doctor after falling ill. Her hard work paid off as she played a crucial role in changing the mindset of the villagers by creating awareness about treatments and medicines required for curing any illness. The villagers now consult a doctor for treatment instead of visiting the tantrik.

Kullu has been overworked since the onset of Covid-19. She single-handedly takes care of around 964 people in the village at a meager remuneration of Rs 4,500 per month. Matilda Kullu also gives medicines to women who experience labour pain even in the middle of the night. Matilda Kullu made efforts to spread awareness about Covid-19 vaccination. She also used to visit 50-60 houses every day to conduct Covid-19 tests. Arrangements were also made to transport elderly women and men to the vaccination centres for the inoculation.

Apart from home visits, providing medicines, and helping expecting mothers with deliveries, Kullu’s other regular tasks include antenatal/postnatal check-ups, immunisation, sanitisation, promoting hygiene, administering polio and other vaccines, conducting surveys, and so on.

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