New Partnership in India With Award-Winning NGO Generates Rural Program Focused on Chronic Disease and Integrative Medicine

Global Health Education Leader CFHI Opens New Program in Mysore, India: "Chronic Disease and Integrative Medicine"

​Child Family Health International (CFHI), a non-profit organization that has provided transformative global health experiences to over 8,000 participants since 1992, today announced the addition of a new program in a rural community outside of Mysore, India, focused on chronic disease and integrative medicine. In collaboration with the award-winning non-governmental organization Swami Vivekananda Youth Movement (SVYM), CFHI will offer program participants the opportunity to become a part of community efforts to address non-communicable diseases through integrative practices and a variety of health outreach and education efforts.

Non-communicable, chronic diseases such as hypertension, cancer, diabetes, and respiratory problems are leading causes of death and disability worldwide. India has more diabetics than any other country in the world, according to the International Diabetes Foundation. Indigenous farmers in the rural village of Saragur, where SVYM focuses its efforts, are increasingly presenting with chronic diseases, disproving the myth that such conditions are only “problems of the rich.”

By rotating at a rural hospital, an ayurvedic treatment center, a disability/physical therapy department, and participating in rural health outreach and education camps, CFHI global health scholars will gain valuable insight into the rising global health burden of chronic disease. In addition, they’ll witness how grassroots, community-based organizations are undertaking treatment through an integrated medicine approach that seeks to treat “the whole patient,” combining Ayurvedic and biomedicine approaches. Participants will live and work alongside rural health practitioners including doctors, nurses, and community health educators, to continue SVYM’s mission of creating a “caring and equitable society.”

Since SVYM was founded in 1984, the organization has worked to provide low-cost and just care to the local indigenous populations, belonging to five different clans – Jenukuruba, Kadukuruba, Yerava, Paniya and Bunde Soliga – communities which had been displaced twice by development projects and had been forced to the fringes of the Bandipur National Park without adequate access to basic services such as health care and education. CFHI is proud and honored to strengthen its work in India through this new partnership and under the leadership of Hema Pandey, CFHI India Director. "I am very excited that this program is ready to take off,” explains Hema. “It’s a real privilege to collaborate with an award-winning non-profit like SVYM. Learning from their dedicated team of health professionals will be an exceptional learning opportunity for CFHI global health scholars.”

To learn more about this program, visit:


Founded in 1992, CFHI ( is a non-governmental organization (NGO) operating at the grassroots level to provide transformative global health education experiences and community empowerment in underserved communities around the world. CFHI offers 30+ Global Health Education Programs designed to broaden students' perspectives about global health - as well as a variety of community health initiatives and projects - in developing countries including Bolivia, Ecuador, India, Argentina, Mexico, Uganda, South Africa, Ghana, Tanzania, and the Philippines. More than 8,000 students have participated in CFHI programs to date. CFHI has been granted Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC).