Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, on Thursday, launched the state wide mission to eradicate malnutrition among children – Gujarat Poshan Abhiyaan (Gujarat Nutrition Mission) for 2020-2022.
The mission was launched from Dahod, the district with the highest number of malnourished children. The mission is being undertaken to ensure and maintain nutrition levels of children, teenage girls, pregnant and lactating women in the state.
Thanking the anganwadi workers, ASHA workers and Auxillary Nurse Midwives (ANM) for their collaborative work at over 50,000 anganwadis in the state to ensure nutrition levels, Rupani also announced a prize money at the end of the year for anganwadis that excel the best in terms of nourishment parameters.
“The anganwadi which achieves levels of complete nourishment, is up to date and fares well and qualifies as a completely nourished anganwadi according to parameters and norms set as per third party assessment, will be awarded at the end of the year. Apart from their salaries, the anganwadi worker, ASHA worker and the ANM worker will each get Rs 12,000 as prize money,” he said.
Rupani further went on to highlight the government’s determination to fight malnourishment by increasing the budgetary allocation from Rs 400 crore to Rs 3,000 crore. Emphasising the need to address the issue of malnourishment in the state for a healthier next generation, Rupani said, “We are determined that in Gujarat, no teenage girl should suffer from anaemia. If teenage girls are healthy, then in the future when they will get married, their kids will be born healthy too. They should get nutritious foods and any kind of deficiencies of iron, vitamins and other vital elements should be eradicated.”
He then urged that people in Gujarat should adopt and take responsibility of one under-nourished child each to help improve their nourishment level.
“In Dahod, there are 6,014 severely malnourished children and 65,000 in all of Gujarat. If people come forward… they can can be MLAs, MPS, administrative officers also… Meet the child once in 15 days, ensure that they are getting the right nourishment… this way we can fight the malnourishment menace.”
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