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Nourishing the Children of Gujarat

Children are the future of the Nation and the nation can progress holistically only ifthey are healthy both physically and mentally. Considering this, Gujarat undertakes an assortment of initiatives in order to ensure a healthy life to a child right from the time when it is in the mother’s womb. Be it E-Mamta or Chiranjeevi Yojana for pregnant mothers or Integrated Child Development Services for children after their birth, the state government ensures special care for both mother and child.

Malnutrition among children is the burning issue faced by the nation yet, Gujarat has taken very strong and innovative steps to mitigate the same. And the results are there for everyone to see. According to the latest Comptroller and Auditor General report, Gujarat is the most successful state in tackling malnutrition, it has improved by 33%. Also, in the recent CAG report on the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS), it states that Gujarat is the most improved state with malnourishment down to 38.77 percent – the sharpest improvement in India. Thanks to the various development scheme initiated by the state Government for a healthy life of every child of the state.One such unique initiative to fight against malnutrition is Doodh Sanjivani Yojana.

Improving lives of Children of Tribal community:

Doodh Sanjivani Yojana was launched in partnership with local dairies for improvement of the health of children of Gujarat. Initially the scheme was launched in few tribal areas of the state covering almost 300 primary schools and 26 Ashram schools.200 ml of fortified flavoured double toned pasteurized milk is provided to almost 50,000 students of these primary and ashram schools.

The scheme worked wonders, not only did the health of the children improve but the attendance in the school also went up. A primary school in Pansa village noted 100% attendance since the ‘Doodh Sanjivani’ scheme was initiated.

Milk and Fruits make a healthy combination:

Apart from fortified flavoured milk the students under the scheme are provided with fresh fruits. According to the 12th five year plan report, 11.21 lakh children are provided with locally available seasonal fruits twice a week in 10 blocks of 6 tribal districts under the Doodh Sanjivani Yojana.

CM Launches “Doodh Sanjivani” in Surat:

In July, 2012 Shri Modi took the scheme forward to Surat, launching the scheme Shri Modi said, “Not only the society is being sensitized against malnutrition but even the government officials have also shown their concerns for the issue. Many of these officials have adopted Aanganwadis and many of their family members are also associated with it”.

In Surat, “Doodh Sanjivani Yojana” is undertaken by Surat district Panchayat along with the participation of people. The Scheme covers more than 40,000 children of 1640 Aanganwadis of Surat district. Fortified Milk is provided to these Aanganwadis twice every week. An annual expenditure of rupees two crore is incurred, in which, Rs.90 lakh has been provided by various industrial houses as a part of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

1, 53, 473 students receive the benefits of “Doodh Sanjivani” Scheme:

A recent assessment of the scheme showed that around 1, 53, 473 students in the schools of Gujarat are provided with the fortified flavoured milk. Categorically, 82, 172 students of Banaskantha, 28, 783 students of Panchmahal and 42, 518 students of Vadodara are provided with fortified milk.

Malnutrition is a major challenge prevailing in the society, while the moves like Doodh Sanjivani by the state government under the able leadership Shri Modi truly serve as a blessing for the children who are to shape the society tomorrow.

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