New Delhi: WCD Ministry has proposed a Rs 1000 crore multi-sectoral nutrition programme to address maternal and child under-nutrition through innovative methods like popularising low cost nutritious food prepared using locally available raw materials.
The proposed programme would also introduce basic health and nutrition education in school curricula and relevant training in all related sectoral programmes.
The objective is to address issues which are not supported in sectoral plans through a "gap-fill" approach, Health Ministry officials said.
The programme proposed by the Women and Child Development Ministry has been provided an outlay of Rs 1057.07 crore.
The innovative approaches would include creation of kitchen gardens near or within anganwadi centres, schools and health facilities and extending food supplementation programmes to a second meal per day for highly vulnerable groups.
The programme would support interventions critical to the achievement of nutrition outcomes in different sectors like identification and promotion of infant and young child feeding practices at local level and promotion of locally available vegetables and fruits.
Incentivising workers in high endemic areas for nutrition counselling and monitoring of child growth and development using the new joint mother-child protection card would be the other target.
"All severely underweight children identified under the Integrated Child Development Services will be further screened for wasting, stunting, loss of appetite and other complications following which they will be treated and rehabilitated," the official said.
According to National Family Health Survey 2005-06, almost half of children under age five years (48 per cent) are chronically malnourished.