- Every year September is observed as Poshan Maah (National Nutrition Month)
- Poshan Maah marks the country's fight against malnutrition
- This year one of the focus areas is plantation of nutri-gardens
New Delhi: Identification of severely acute malnourished children and their management and plantation of nutri gardens will be undertaken as focus activities during ‘Poshan Maah’ in September, the Women and Child Development Ministry said on Sunday. Every year September is celebrated as ‘Poshan Maah’ (National Nutrition Month) to mark the country’s fight against malnutrition. Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani had chaired an inter-ministerial meeting on August 27 and Ram Mohan Mishra, Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development, interacted with all states and UTs to secure convergent activities during Poshan Maah, according to a statement by the ministry.
Identification of Severely Acute Malnourished (SAM) Children and their management and plantation of Poshan Vaatikas — Nutri gardens, will be undertaken as focus activities during Poshan Maah, along with awareness generation regarding importance of early breast feeding, need for good nutrition during first 1000 days of life, measures for reducing anemia in young women and children etc, it said.
To tackle malnutrition, the government is identifying locally available nutritious food in different parts of the country that can be grown at Anganwadi centres. These gardens are called nutri gardens. The government is celebrating the National Nutrition Month or ‘Poshan Maah’ in September during which several programmes to spread awareness on the issues related to malnutrition in children, pregnant women and lactating mothers are being organised. The Department of School Education, Ministry of Education, has asked states to conduct nutrition e-quiz and meme making competition amongst students, the statement said.
The Ministry of Panchayati Raj is planning to conduct special committee meetings in every gram panchayat during the month while the Ministry of Rural Development has advised states to promote nutri gardens with the support of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).
The Ministry of Ayush has offered to support building a healthy lifestyle by adopting Yoga and holistic nutrition. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has also extended its cooperation for all the activities in the best possible manner, the statement said.
Considering the prevalent coronavirus situation in the country, the Ministry of Women and Child Development said it is encouraging all stakeholders to use digital platforms for celebrating Poshan Maah. Social media, online activities, podcasts, and e-Samvaad etc will be used to disseminate knowledge and information about the importance of nutrition.
The ministry is also hosting a webinar series, in which subject experts and health professionals will throw light on important aspects of health and nutrition for women and children, the statement said.
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 (Water, Sanitation 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 pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene.