Bhubaneswar: In pursuit of the 5-T mantra of the Odisha government, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday launched a strategy for transforming nutrition outcomes in the remote and inaccessible areas of the state.
The nutrition strategy has been aptly titled, ‘SOPAN’- Strategy for Odisha’s Pathway to Accelerated Nutrition. It will be implemented by the Women and Child Development and Mission Shakti Department.
The strategy intends to keep nutrition in the forefront of the development initiatives in the state. The beneficiaries of this strategy will be children below 6 years, adolescent girls and pregnant and nursing women of 125 identified projects across 22 districts.
The salient features of the strategy are as follows.
—Intensive implementation in 125 nutritionally-challenged projects identified as per criteria.
—Special intervention package for adolescent girls of 15-19 years.
—Additional Hot Cooked Meals for pregnant women and nursing mothers in addition to the existing ‘Take Home Ration’.
—Community-based creches for better health and nutrition management of children under three years.
—Community-based management of severe acute malnutrition and supervised feeding and counselling for children with moderate acute malnutrition.
—Pada Pusti Karyakram- a programme to deliver nutrition services in inaccessible areas through mobilization of mothers’ groups.
—Fortification of take-home ration and hot cooked meals to provide essential micronutrients/vitamins etc to the children below 6 years.
—Ojana Utsaba- Half-yearly screening and validation of weighment of every child and diligent tracking of malnourished children.
—Pusti Sakhis- a Community Resource Person to be deployed in Hard-to-Reach areas.
—Panchayats to be encouraged to take greater ownership of nutrition with awards for better performing Panchayat.
—Pusti Panthi- provision for flexi-funds at the Gram Panchayat level for providing incentives to caregivers and performance-based incentives to frontline functionaries.
—Involving SHGs for better nutrition services.
—Nutrition budgeting as a tool to promote financial allocations by different departments.
—Annual Nutrition Survey to provide project-level data not available at present for informing policy and programming.
—Training Centre for Anganwadi workers in Bhubaneswar to be upgraded to a centre of excellence-State Institute for Nutrition.
—Strengthening convergence with departments like Panchayati Raj & Drinking Water, Health & Family Welfare, ST, SC & OBC Development, Agriculture & Farmer’ s Empowerment, IT etc.
—Forging partnerships/MoUs with Azim Premji Philanthropic Initiatives (APPI), Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI), National Institute for Nutrition (NIN), WorldFish, World Food Programme (WFP), UNICEF etc.
—Make full use of technology using apps, MIS, geo-tagging etc.
—Dovetail funds from various sources including Panchayats, District Mineral Fund (DMF), Odisha Mineral Bearing Area Development Corporation (OMBADC) and development partners.
—Engaging with men for positive nutrition outcomes.
—Aggressive 360-degree communication campaign through various means including Tiki Mausi (a mascot unveiled by the Women and Child Development and Mission Shakti Department in collaboration with the UNICEF to spread awareness about the nutrition of children and women).