Malnutrition is becoming one of the significant challenges in the mining-affected areas of Odisha. Taking a step forward to protect children from the same, the District Administration, Keonjhar is running creches named "Mamata Ghara" in remote and needy locations, which are mining affected.
The initiative is being run under the DMF Initiated Creches against Malnutrition (DICAM) project launched on March 08, last year.
In these creches, young children are provided with all basic necessities like nutritious food, clean clothes and a safe environment besides getting all health facilities.
Two trained creche workers, selected from the same village, look after the children for eight hours a day.
According to the National Family Health Survey (NFHS) - IV, over 44 per cent children in Keonjhar district are stunted, nearly 19 per cent are wasted and 5 per cent are severely wasted. Only one in ten children between the age group 6 months to 2 years in the district receives an adequate diet, an official statement said.
Keonjhar Collector, Ashish Thakre, while talking to ANI said, "This is probably the first kind of project which addresses child nutrition issues in mining-affected areas. The creche- "Mamta Ghara" is designed to cater the children from 6 months to 3 years. It is in this age group that nutrition is most required for a child's development which most of the parents' involved in mining work are not able to provide to their children."
"So far, 60 creches have been established and running successfully in partnership with EKJUT (NGO), providing critical services to more than 1500 children in the hard to reach mining pockets of the district. More than 100 Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) children have been identified and rehabilitated till now," Thakre added.
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