How Aditya Aluminium Is Nourishing Lives Through Project Suposhan In Odisha’s Sambalpur

Sambalpur: Malnutrition is a significant public health challenge in Odisha. Various forms of malnutrition include undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies and overnutrition.

The prevalence of stunted growth and food wastage among children in Odisha aged under 5 years are 31% and 18.1%, respectively, according to a report by Coalition for Food & Nutrition Security (CFNS). Of them, 8% are severely affected malnourished (SAM) and 30% fall under Grade I-IV malnutrition.

Deaths due to malnourishment continued in the mineral-rich district of Sambalpur, with the communities living under conditions of semi-starvation and hidden hunger with little information and knowledge of their entitlements, means to access and claim benefits and services from the state.

Aditya Birla Group’s Aditya Aluminum in Lapanga launched ‘Suposhan’ project in 2019 as pledge partner of the state government, to highlight the importance of a nutritious diet.

Aditya Aluminium is actively engaged with people of Rengali block in Sambalpur district, working closely with the Odisha government. Over 1,500 people have been directly impacted through this initiative.

“Our overall objective is to generate awareness among residents of six Gram Panchayats of the Rengali block on the criticality of healthy food choices and their positive effect. Towards this our Nutrition Garden initiative is designed to supplement the dietary needs of households, especially in areas where access to diverse and nutritious food is limited. Through the Suposhan campaign till date, we have been able to directly impact more than 1,500 people in our model villages of Naikpada and Narupada,” said Aditya Aluminum Unit Head Sameer Nayak.

Elaborating further, Nayak said they reach out to pregnant women, lactating mothers, adolescent girls and children across all age groups.

“We have distributed nutrition kits to pregnant and lactating mothers, mobilized nutrition garden support from OLM (Odisha Livelihood Mission) under Mo Bagicha Abhiyaan, part of the government initiative under Poshan Mission and distributed fruit saplings for backyard fruit orchard development,” added Nayak.

Aditya Aluminium provides children multivitamins recommended by paediatricians. A nutrition kit consisting of Horlicks, jaggery and soya chunks is supplied.

The company reaches out to mothers, who are explained how nutritious meals with simple ingredients can be cooked at home. Every household is given a chart of cooked meal menu to make the process easy for them.

“The company is complementing the government’s efforts in this direction The problem of malnutrition and anaemia is mainly due to extremely low awareness on the subject in the community. The women who take care of the family’s well-being are themselves either working as wage laborers or are completely unaware of the actions that should be taken to improve their Red Blood Cells to fight anemia and malnutrition,” said Leelabati Nag, Child Development Programme Officer, Rengali.

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