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National Nutrition Month

National Nutrition Month: How SuPoshan Sanginis Are Spreading The Idea Of Nutrition And Supporting POSHAN Abhiyaan

SuPoshan Sanginis are women volunteers who support Anganwadi and ASHA workers. Their main role is to identify malnourished children, anaemic girls and women and support them through nutrition plan

National Nutrition Month: How SuPoshan Sanginis Are Spreading The Idea Of Nutrition And Supporting POSHAN Abhiyaan
Highlights
  • SuPoshan Sanginis educate people women and children about nutrition
  • They regularly monitor every child’s growth, provide input for improvements
  • They assist ASHA and Anganwadi workers in building a healthy nation

New Delhi: The first pregnancy brought both joy and anxiety for Sahajadi Bibiwas from Haldia, West Bengal. Sahajadi had many doubts and queries about the different aspects of pregnancy but was not sure about someone reliable to guide her in this matter. Lack of support from family on seeking regular medical guidance during the tenure of her pregnancy added to her distress. Sahajadi was five months pregnant when SuPoshan Sangini – Tapasi Betal Jana, enrolled her name as a pregnant mother and persuaded her to visit Auxiliary Nurse Midwife (ANM) for a comprehensive check-up. Post-check-up, Sahajadi was found to be anaemic and was advised to take Iron Folic Acid (IFA) as well as consume green and leafy vegetables.

Also Read: National Nutrition Month: Akshaya Patra Foundation Is Improving Nutritional Quality Of Mid-day Meals Through Fortification

The delay in intervention led to the birth of an underweight baby girl Nusrat (2.1 kgs as opposed to ideal weight of 2.5 kgs to 3.5 kgs). However, SuPoshan Sangini Tapasi Betal Jana continued to guide Sahajadi about the importance of nutritious diet on the health of a mother and child and also other practices like Kangaroo care (holding infant skin to skin). Overtime, Nusrat gained weight and just three months after birth, she weighed 5 kgs. SuPoshan project initiated by Adani Wilmar in October 2016 has a network of 640 SuPoshan Sanginis (women volunteers) spread across 1,440 villages of India who are reiterating the message of right nutrition and helping children escape malnutrition at an early stage.

Also Read: Poshan Maah 2020: How Indira Didi, An Anganwadi Worker Is Braving All Odds Amid Coronavirus To Keep Her Village Healthy

While Sahajadi found a mentor in SuPoshan Sangini, 20-year-old Beauty Singh from Kishore Prasad village in Odisha got an elder sister. Talking to NDTV about the role of SuPoshan Sangini in her life, Beauty Singh said,

National Nutrition Month: How SuPoshan Sanginis Are Spreading The Idea Of Nutrition And Supporting POSHAN Abhiyaan

Beauty Singh with her new born son

After marriage when I moved to this village, everyone would come home and ask, what have you cooked for your family, what do you do all day. Sangini didi (Sister) was the first person to ask me about me and now my newborn child. During my pregnancy, anganwadi centres were closed due to the Coronavirus pandemic but Sangini didi would call and educate me on feeding practices, cooking and eating habits, vaccinations and other key things.

What Is The Role OF SuPoshan Sanginis?

‘SuPoshan’ started with a mission to reduce the occurrence of malnutrition among children less than 5 years of age and anaemia among adolescent girls (11-19 years of age) and women in reproductive age (19-45 years).

The name ‘Sangini’ comes from the literal translation of the word ‘companion’. SuPoshan Sanginis are women volunteers who support Anganwadi and ASHA workers.

Also Read: National Nutrition Month: Can India Piggy Bank On Food Fortification To Achieve The Goal Of POSHAN Abhiyaan?

How SuPoshan Sanginis Promote Right Nutrition?

Sanginis play the role of a guide, mentor and guardian. They go door-to-door to collect information like body weight and height of children, and test for Haemoglobin levels of girls and women and identify target groups.

National Nutrition Month: How SuPoshan Sanginis Are Spreading The Idea Of Nutrition And Supporting POSHAN Abhiyaan

A SuPoshan Sangini measuring the growth of a child

Once a child has been identified, the medically complicated severely malnourished children are referred to the Nutrition Rehabilitation Center (NRC) for treatment. While other malnourished children and anaemic girls and women are treated through community-based interventions like introducing nutritious recipes, kitchen gardens, group meetings and family counselling.

One of the sources of nutrition for children under five years of age and other healthcare services like immunisation is Anganwadi centres. SuPoshan Sanginis like 28-year-old Madhulaxmi Porte, from Janardanpur village in West Bengal make sure that beneficiaries are aware of the services they are entitled to and avail it.

National Nutrition Month: How SuPoshan Sanginis Are Spreading The Idea Of Nutrition And Supporting POSHAN Abhiyaan

SuPoshan Sangini Madhulaxmi Porte ready for her door-to-door visits

38-year-old Seema Qureshi from Kawai village in Rajasthan who has been working as a Sangini since 2016 briefed us about her work and said,

Initially, we focus on building trust and a relationship with a family and to attain that, we visit them regularly, interact and understand their way of living and accordingly guide. Like, colostrum, the bright yellowish, thick, first milk of the mother is rich in proteins, has anti-infective properties and should be fed to the baby. But elderly women often consider it impure and ask new mothers to discard it. So, we bust such myths.

Also Read: Poshan Month 2020: Akshaya Patra, India’s Largest Mid-Day Meal Serving Organisation, Tells NDTV About How They Are Providing Nutrition To Children Amid COVID-19

National Nutrition Month: How SuPoshan Sanginis Are Spreading The Idea Of Nutrition And Supporting POSHAN Abhiyaan

SuPoshan Sangini Chandrakanti Behera

Further sharing an example of how Sanginis counsel and mentor families on nutrition, 30-year-old Chandrakanti Behera from Kishore Prasad in Odisha said,

Kitchen gardens are a great source of fresh vegetables essential for basic nutrition. We promote the concept of kitchen garden by imparting lessons on how to start one and demonstrate healthy, innovative and nutritious recipes.

Another Sangini, 40-year-old Versha Rangari from Saoner in Maharashtra said that she recommends affordable nutritious food items to a family. She said,

We are rural people and we can’t provide dry fruits and nuts to our children so I suggest alternatives like cow milk, Singdana (peanuts), legumes, and others. Also, we stress on exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life as it provides adequate nutrition and protection from diseases.

Sanginis regularly monitor every child’s growth and updates her database. This also helps the family better understand the improvement in their child’s growth. They also use a particular health tablet for data collection and showcase videos to new mothers in order to help gain an understanding of nutritional needs in the local language.

National Nutrition Month: How SuPoshan Sanginis Are Spreading The Idea Of Nutrition And Supporting POSHAN Abhiyaan

SuPoshan Sangini imparting lessons on the role of nutrition

Also Read: In COVID-19 Pandemic, More And More Families Are Going Hungry Thereby Impacting India’s Nutritional Status: NGO Save The Children

The coronavirus induced lockdown did act as a roadblock for the Sanginis but they continued with their work through tele counselling. With the phased reopening, some Sanginis have started visiting nearby houses like Versha Rangari from Saoner in Maharashtra normally covers three villages. During the lockdown, she could visit only a nearby village where she gave lessons on WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) practices.

Impact Of SuPoshan Sangini Project

Over 10,000 children have shifted from severe to moderate form of undernutrition. Over 24,000 children have moved from moderately undernourished to healthy category. Also, over 8,000 women have improved Hb levels, informed a spokesperson from Adani Foundation.

Going forward, the team plans to assess and address the impact of COVID-19 on children and their nutritional needs. The long term vision of the project is to create the SuPoshan Sangini as voluntary support for life in villages and local communities.

National Nutrition Month: How SuPoshan Sanginis Are Spreading The Idea Of Nutrition And Supporting POSHAN Abhiyaan

Seema Qureshi has been working as a Sangini since 2016

As a community worker, the SuPoshan Sangini can cater to a population of 3,000 people and is capable enough to counsel and advise people on their nutritional requirements. People can come to her even after the CSR activity stops in a specific location, while we take up new locations, explained a spokesperson from Adani Foundation.

Also Read: Poshan Maah 2020: Why Protecting Health And Nutrition Rights Of Children During COVID-19 Is Important For India, Experts Speak

NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene

World

24,50,12,529Cases
20,64,25,824Active
3,36,14,434Recovered
49,72,271Deaths
Coronavirus has spread to 195 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 24,50,12,529 and 49,72,271 have died; 20,64,25,824 are active cases and 3,36,14,434 have recovered as on October 28, 2021 at 4:00 am.

India

3,42,31,809 16,156Cases
1,60,9891,672Active
3,36,14,434 17,095Recovered
4,56,386 733Deaths
In India, there are 3,42,31,809 confirmed cases including 4,56,386 deaths. The number of active cases is 1,60,989 and 3,36,14,434 have recovered as on October 28, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
Maharashtra

66,06,536 1,485

23,096 3,500

64,43,342 4,947

1,40,098 38

Kerala

49,38,603 9,445

77,158 2,100

48,31,468 6,723

29,977 622

Karnataka

29,86,835 282

8,459 80

29,40,339 349

38,037 13

Tamil Nadu

26,98,493 1,075

12,288 252

26,50,145 1,315

36,060 12

Andhra Pradesh

20,64,854 567

4,777 122

20,45,713 437

14,364 8

Uttar Pradesh

17,10,114 13

100 6

16,87,115 7

22,899

West Bengal

15,89,042 976

7,973 124

15,61,973 837

19,096 15

Delhi

14,39,709 38

348 25

14,14,270 13

25,091

Odisha

10,39,818 549

4,392 213

10,27,108 334

8,318 2

Chhattisgarh

10,05,926 28

263 14

9,92,088 12

13,575 2

Rajasthan

9,54,411 4

20 0

9,45,437 4

8,954

Gujarat

8,26,481 17

173 2

8,16,220 15

10,088

Madhya Pradesh

7,92,804 20

108 9

7,82,172 10

10,524 1

Haryana

7,71,204 15

133 5

7,61,022 10

10,049

Bihar

7,26,073 5

41 1

7,16,371 4

9,661

Telangana

6,70,829 186

4,164 63

6,62,714 122

3,951 1

Assam

6,09,506 244

3,838 153

5,99,681 391

5,987 6

Punjab

6,02,289 38

246 20

5,85,487 16

16,556 2

Jharkhand

3,48,705 28

160 30

3,43,408 56

5,137 2

Uttarakhand

3,43,861 17

150 6

3,36,312 23

7,399

Jammu And Kashmir

3,31,865 70

838 16

3,26,596 86

4,431

Himachal Pradesh

2,23,406 261

1,972 211

2,17,693 48

3,741 2

Goa

1,77,969 23

454 29

1,74,152 51

3,363 1

Puducherry

1,27,846 40

443 10

1,25,546 50

1,857

Manipur

1,23,473 70

844 29

1,20,712 97

1,917 2

Mizoram

1,19,496 547

7,320 446

1,11,752 991

424 2

Tripura

84,438 15

123 1

83,499 14

816

Meghalaya

83,466 51

507 22

81,511 71

1,448 2

Chandigarh

65,331 5

29 2

64,482 3

820

Arunachal Pradesh

55,120 6

115 22

54,725 28

280

Sikkim

31,925 13

177 1

31,353 12

395

Nagaland

31,759 12

222 3

30,856 15

681

Ladakh

20,925 8

47 6

20,670 2

208

Dadra And Nagar Haveli

10,682 1

6 0

10,672 1

4

Lakshadweep

10,365

0 0

10,314

51

Andaman And Nicobar Islands

7,650 2

5 1

7,516 1

129

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