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Ministry of Women and Child Development19-November, 2012 21:0 IST
|Malnutrition Figures A Wake-up Call: President |
Fight against Malnutrition Should Reach Every Family and Person: Smt. Krishna Tirath
President Launches Campaign against Malnutrition
|President Shri Pranab Mukherjee today launched a nationwide IEC campaign against Malnutrition. The IEC campaign against malnutrition is the initiative of the Women and Child Development Ministry. |
Besides the Women and Child Development Minister Smt Krishna Tirath and Human Resource Development Minister Shri M.M. Pallam Raju, representatives of several U.N agencies, Shri Aamir Khan, Shri Prasoon Joshi, members of the civil society and frontline workers were present on the occasion.
Calling the data of undernutrition as of concern, the President stated: “We must do our utmost, at a time when Indian economy is on a strong positive growth trajectory. These figures are a wakeup call and underline the need for concerted drive against malnutrition, and until we ensure good nutrition and health for our children and their mothers we cannot achieve our targets of sustained and inclusive growth… Utmost priority must be accorded to prevent undernutrition, as early as possible, across the life cycle, to avert irreversible cumulative growth and development deficits.”
He said, creating increased public awareness on the different dimensions of malnutrition is a key requirement for the success of the campaign, and there is a need to spread awareness about different programmes separately and concurrently. He expected the hope that the campaign would create an enabling social as well as media environment that would enable families and communities and other stakeholders to not only understand malnutrition but also to take informed collective action.
Minister for Women and Child Development, Smt Krishna Tirath, said that the campaign would create greater sensitivity for women and children in the society and bring about a behavioural change which will inspire the masses to understand their responsibilities and deliver their duties. She desired that the fight against malnutrition should reach from every anganwadi centre to each and every family and person. She was confident that this awareness campaign will emphasise on policy change and help in preventing and eradicating malnutrition in children, adolescents, pregnant and lactating mothers. She specially appealed to media persons to play a proactive role in taking this campaign to the common man.
Shri Prem Narain, Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development in his welcome address said that under the guidance of the PM’s National Council on India’s Nutrition Challenges the Ministry has taken several initiatives to address the issues of Malnutrition The IEC campaign being one of the important steps, besides strengthening and restructuring of ICDS which the government has recently approved. The IEC Campaign Against Malnutrition intends to sensitize and broaden awareness about good nutrition among the masses for improved nutrition outcomes. He informed that the campaign will be carried out at the National, State and Local levels through conventional and modern media through multimedia channels with the help of Ministry of Information & Broadcasting agencies.
The campaign will be rolled out in an evolutionary manner of 4 stages which runback to back with some overlap. Stage 1 will create an awareness on symptoms of malnutrition for a period of 8 weeks, Stage 2 gives a Clarion Call and is spread over six weeks. In Stage 3, there are key messages on basic critical practices for maternal and child care as prevention from malnutrition. Stage 4 will inform the public about acquiring services and Mother Child Protection card.
Malnutrition amongst children and women has been a grave concern for the country and it was the decision of the Prime Minister’s Council on India’s Nutrition Challenges that one of the best strategies to combat the problem of malnutrition, would be to educate and empower the families and mothers on better care of their children. The Ministry of Women and Child Development, taking this decision forward, has designed the campaign with technical support of UNICEF. The Campaign has the probono services of Shri Aamir Khan and the creative efforts of Mr Prasoon Joshi.
Shri Aamir Khan is the face of this campaign and has worked in-depth with the team of officials from the Ministry and creative agency, McCann, for the past two years. Shri Aamir Khan will connect with people and spread awareness on impact of malnutrition and simple ways of preventing and reducing it, these messages on infant and young child feeding and caring practices, will be communicated through several creatives in the form of ads on TV, radio, print media etc in 18 different Indian languages. The effort willbe to mobilize the support of the nation in the fight against malnutrition.
At the launch Shri Aamir Khan described his engagement and involvement in shaping the campaign as a great learning experience as this was not an easy communication. He emphasised that ‘if our children are not healthy then we start on a back foot” He expressed that the country needs to fight malnutrition and this campaign would generate desired responses so that malnutrition quits India.
Shri Prasoon Joshi illustrated how it was difficult to capture the concept as it was not one action or factor but a complex problem to be communicated in easy steps.
The Country Head UNICEF, Mr Louis George Arsenualt valued the long partnership of UNICEF and expressed commitment to work in close cooperation with the government. He also lauded the efforts of the government in addressing the issues in tackling malnutrition in India.
(Release ID :89129)