Weighing of children, number of beneficiaries and frequency of visits by supervisors — these are among the aspects that will be put under scanner in around 1,000 anganwadi centres in the city over the next couple of months.
Ten anganwadi projects in the east and northeast districts will be assessed to identify challenges in the government’s nutrition efforts under the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS), a central programme under which anganwadi centres operate. The 10 projects are Trilokpuri, Geeta Colony, Shakarpur and Patparganj in east district, and Sundar Nagari, Seemapuri, Nand Nagari, Seelampur, Shahdara and Sonia Vihar in the northeast district.
There are a total of 95 anganwadi projects in Delhi and each project has approximately 100 anganwadis centres under it.
The assessment will be conducted under the Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR), and carried out by NGO Matri Sudha.
“Malnutrition in children is rampant in Delhi despite the large amount of money going into the ICDS. Why is this budget and its benefits not reaching children? It is important to understand what the challenges being faced in implementation are. We will be sending the findings to the government,” said DCPCR member Ranjana Prasad.
According to her, the findings of the 10 projects will be taken as representative of issues across the city as these are “the most vulnerable projects” with large migrant populations.
The assessment will involve questionnaires for Child Development Project Officers (CDPO), who are in charge of various projects, as well as for supervisors, anganwadi workers and beneficiaries.
Basic information on beneficiaries such as the status of their residence in Delhi and the kind of accommodation they live in will be accompanied with information on awareness and utilisation of anganwadi services.
How regularly children receive supplementary nutrition, whether they attend health and nutrition education meetings, how often children have been weighed and tracked for their nutrition standards, and if their mothers are even aware that this activity should be happening in the centre — all these aspects are supposed to be covered.
If weighing and growth monitoring is not happening in the centres, workers will be asked whether this is because the tools are unavailable, unused, not in working condition or if they do not know how to use them.
The number of times supervisers and CDPOs have visited each centre in the last three months will also be scrutinised, as well as the number of times the centre was functional in the week before the assessment and the last time the workers were trained.