Other States

Odisha plans ‘Nutrition at Doorstep’ for children with stunted, wasted growth

Image for representation.

Image for representation. | Photo Credit: Akhilesh Kumar

Concerned over the presence of lakhs of families having children with stunted and wasted growth and anaemic pregnant women, the Odisha government is toying with idea of providing kitchen garden and poultry farms so that these targeted households would have access to nutritious food.

Odisha’s Women and Child Development (WCD) Department has furnished information about 13,48,707 households having members with stunted and wasted growth, underweight children and anaemic pregnant women.

As on June 2022, as many as 4,93,941 households had children identified with stunted growth, 1,31,099 (wasted growth), 2,69,784 (underweight children) and 4,53,883 (anaemic pregnant women).

Keonjhar, which is one of the India’s richest districts in terms of mineral reserve, has a high prevalence of people with such conditions. There are 98,918 such households in Keonjhar — highest among all 30 districts.

Keonjhar is followed by Balangir having 86,132 such households and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s home district Ganjam with 82,895 .

Keonjhar district is the recipient of the highest of ₹8,191 crore fund under the District Mineral Foundation(DMF) for taking up development and welfare projects and programmes in mining-affected areas.

“These households require immediate access to nutritious food. The Agriculture and Farmer Empowerment Department had sought information so that it could plan out support for promotion of nutrition at doorstep,” said a senior WCD official.

Under the ‘Nutrition at Doorstep’ programme, kitchen garden and poultry would be promoted at every household. While the Agriculture Department would support kitchen garden and poultry, the WCD Department would persuade these households to consume nutritious food.

According to initial plan, the WCD Department will provide information on such households for distribution of saplings and poultry.

“Anganwadi workers will coordinate with Krishi Mitras and other officials for providing necessary support to the families for maintaining the kitchen garden. Moreover, they will ensure consumption of the vegetables and eggs and constantly monitor anaemia status of the children,” the official said.

The anganwadi workers will assist in raising awareness and bringing out behavioural change of the targeted beneficiaries.

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Printable version | Aug 19, 2022 9:00:05 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/odisha-plans-nutrition-at-doorstep-for-children-with-stunted-wasted-growth/article65783683.ece