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A mixed method approach was adopted. Six focus groups were conducted in each slum. Thirty in-depth interviews and 22 key informant interviews were conducted using questionnaires across both sites. A flowchart on methodology is presented in Figure 2. Regarding social information, 31.3% of the female respondents were non-disabled and belonged to the age group of 30 years or older. A total of 66.6% of disabled-female respondents were between 12 and 17 years and 18 to 23 years age groups (Table 1). Besides, 68.8% of the non-disabled-female respondents were found married, while a majority (86.7%) of the disabled-female respondents were unmarried. Population size included disabled-females, their family members, neighbours, stakeholders from GO and NGOs. Menstruating females with intellectual and physical disabilities were included in the study. However, in the case of persons with intellectual disabilities, their caretakers were approached instead of the people with disabilities. Teachers, school administrators, doctors, community health service providers, etc., working in slums both from GO and NGO sectors were considered as the key-informants. FGDs were mainly conducted with families having a disabled member(s) including caretakers and with neighbours that have at least one disabled female in the community. The purpose was to understand caretakers’ and neighbours’ everyday experiences while maintaining a delicate balance with females with intellectual disabilities. It was to assess or reflect upon the socio-economic environment these disabled groups were residing. Particularly, full and effective participation of caretakers helped understand the responses of females with intellectual disabilities. This group was even found to be fully dependent on their mothers or sisters for access to adequate amenities or educational attainment as well as for expressing feelings. Without the support of such informal caretakers, this group of disabled females was not able to properly maintain their daily cleanliness or hygiene and manage medication by themselves.
Table 1

Social information of the female respondents

SIAspectsNon-disabled-Female (%)Disabled-Female (%)
Age of the respondents Less than 12  6.7 
12–17 12.5 33.3 
18–23 25 33.3 
24–29 25 13.3 
30 and more 31.3 13.3 
Marital status of the respondents Unmarried 25 86.7 
Married 68.8 6.7 
Widow – 6.7 
The education level of the respondents No Schooling 43.8 86.7 
Primary – 13.3 
Secondary 18.8 – 
Higher Secondary 25 – 
Graduation and Above 6.3 – 
Family size 3 or less 43.8 20 
4–6 37.5 53.3 
7–9 12.5 26.7 
Size of the house (sq. feet) Less than 100 12.5 26.7 
100–150 31.3 73.3 
150–200 50 – 
Number of rooms 68.8 73.3 
25 26.7 
Materials of house Tin 75 93.3 
Bamboo 6.3 6.7 
Tin and Brick 12.5 – 
SIAspectsNon-disabled-Female (%)Disabled-Female (%)
Age of the respondents Less than 12  6.7 
12–17 12.5 33.3 
18–23 25 33.3 
24–29 25 13.3 
30 and more 31.3 13.3 
Marital status of the respondents Unmarried 25 86.7 
Married 68.8 6.7 
Widow – 6.7 
The education level of the respondents No Schooling 43.8 86.7 
Primary – 13.3 
Secondary 18.8 – 
Higher Secondary 25 – 
Graduation and Above 6.3 – 
Family size 3 or less 43.8 20 
4–6 37.5 53.3 
7–9 12.5 26.7 
Size of the house (sq. feet) Less than 100 12.5 26.7 
100–150 31.3 73.3 
150–200 50 – 
Number of rooms 68.8 73.3 
25 26.7 
Materials of house Tin 75 93.3 
Bamboo 6.3 6.7 
Tin and Brick 12.5 – 
Figure 2

Flowchart on the methodology followed in research.

Figure 2

Flowchart on the methodology followed in research.

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