Avni Conference, Goa, January 2023 - Day 4

January 16, 2023 by Utkarsh Hathi

This blogpost covers the fourth day of the Avni conference which includes the participation of various NGOs who have been using Avni in their programs.

I woke up with some fresh energy. I am not sure if it was adequate sleep after not being able to sleep well for a couple of nights or it was the refreshing taste of Goan coconut Fenny from previous night. The day started with Avni team members and some of the NGO folks participating in the morning run at the beach.

Morning Run

After morning run at the beach

Start of the Avni Conference

While everyone was reaching the conference room after breakfast, Vinay started creating a sketch on the board and invited everyone to contribute to it and start the day in a truly open source way!

Open Source Sketch

Open source sketch

Everyone gathered in the conference room and took their seats by 9:30. Arjun started the conference by sharing the context and agenda of the conference which included the need for Avni and NGOs to connect with each other, understand the work done by different organisations, Avni’s role in it and the roadmap for 2023. We received some feedback from organisations on demonstrations of new features and figuring out ways to make communication with organisations more engaging and efficient. The feedback helped us in prioritising plans for the second day of the conference.


Context Setting

After the context setting, it was time for introductions and it was decided that everyone would mention an adjective that described them, a dish they loved and what they were expecting from the two day conference. There were quite a few interesting dishes people spoke of which others did not know of and it was an hour of fun and laughter where some of them also shared how they could not believe at first that they were travelling to Goa on a weekend for a conference! Everyone from the organisations participating was looking forward to understanding new features, meeting other organisations and how they were using Avni.

Post the introductions, we reviewed the previous year for Avni where Arjun spoke of the increasing number of users and implementations using the product, features delivered based on demands while also facing the overwhelming challenges of delivering implementations aiming at scale and features making the product even more complex.

It was time for a coffee break and by this time everyone had placed different snacks and sweets they had brought with them. While munching on different delicacies from different parts of the country and having coffee, everyone took their time to take a stroll around or interact with people they were meeting for the first time.

NGO Talks

The NGO talks started with two of the health programs where Avni is used. The first was Jan Swasthya Sahyog (People’s health group) which has been working in community healthcare in remote tribal areas of Chhattisgarh for more than 30 years. JSS had already been using Bahmni for the information management at the hospital they had set up. They have been using Avni in their field programs in maternal and child health, chronic disease care and recently started using the product for monthly reporting of various other activities such as animal health care and self help groups. He explained how Avni has been of great help for them in helping make better decisions on the ground, monitor the workforce and efficient and quick reporting and analysis. Ravi

Ravindra from JSS

The second session was by Abhay from Yenepoya medical college who has been using the Avni application for the research and programs under the community medicine department. They required a data collection platform that could help them collect longitudinal data on the health and demography of the areas they have been working in to design their programs and research going forward. HDSS

Abhay from Yenepoya Medical College

Since we already had two presentations on health programs, we decided to bring in discussion Indus Action who will roll out Avni for the program called “Portfolio of wealth and entitlement rights” which seeks to facilitate easy access to social security schemes for marginalised populations. They aim to do this by collecting different data points and running an automated eligibility engine which can help the community workers to guide individuals on submitting documents and availing different schemes. The larger aim for them is to advocate to the State for reducing sources of data collection, and to have correct estimations for population requiring benefit of schemes.

Indus Action

Madhuri from Indus Action

Post Lunch

We took a lunch break after which Vinay provided a demonstration of the new features we have rolled out in the previous year - the major features being the capability to assign subjects (individuals) and tasks to specific users, multiple sync strategies, repeatable question groups etc. This session was quite helpful for the organisations as it gave them an idea of different ways in which Avni can be utilised for their programs if needed.

We continued the NGO talks afterwards. Pankaj and Appa from the Institute of Health Management Pachod explained how Avni is used in their field interventions to help ASHAs with monitoring of maternal and child health care and how the app works as a job aid tool for them to provide better quality of care and counselling.


Appa from IHMP

Vijaya from Leadership for Equity (LFE) discussed the role of organisation in teacher capacity building and how recently they have started working in collaboration with the government of Andhra Pradesh in that aspect. LFE will be rolling out the Avni application with 3000 users who will be recording details of observations in the classroom through Avni. The observation is of teachers which is done with the help of a TEACH tool designed by the World bank for identifying the capability of teachers and help in improving it. For Avni, this is going to be the use of the application at the largest scale till now.


Vijaya from LFE

The last NGO talk for the day was from Hiral who was representing ATE Chandra Foundation. They have been using Avni since 2019 for the project called Rejuvenating Water Bodies which aims at desilting water bodies and helping farmers by letting them use the silt in their farmlands. Avni was used mainly for health interventions prior to this project. The App is used by different sets of users in the project to create work orders, doing daily recordings for farmers, machines and work orders. The impact of the project has led NITI Aayog to implement it in many other districts from last year. Along with LFE this is another project which is implemented at scale this year as it plans to desilt 10,000 water bodies this year.


Hiral from RWB

End of Day

We ended the day with taking some cool pictures in the refreshing goan themed coconut print shirts which we had worn throughout the day to celebrate the first day of conference in Goa. I was looking forward to interacting with people representing different organisations and keen to understand their programs and that expectation was fulfilled quite well on the first day along with some joyful moments with teammates and other comrades from different organisations.

Floral with NGO

Read the other day blogs