ICDS ameliorates mother and child life in Himachal

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Shimla, Aug 24 (UNI) Integrated Child Development Services Scheme (ICDS), the largest programme focussing on maternal and child health and nutrition in India and abroad, is being implemented successfully and benefitting the target groups in Himachal Pradesh.

A spokesman of the Himachal Pradesh government said the largest national programme for the development of mothers and children, which was introduced initially in only one block in the tribal district of Kinnaur, is now being vigorously implemented in all the 75 Child Development Blocks of the state, besides one project in Shimla.

The state government, during the current year on various components of the scheme, which would benefit about 5.33 lakh women and children of the state, would spend a sum of Rs 64.65 crore.

He said the scheme envisages supplementary nutrition, pre-school education, immunisation, health check-ups, referral services and health education.

Services under the programme are coordinated at the village, block, district and state levels. The programme seeks effective convergence of inter-sectoral services through community-based Anganwari workers and helpers, supportive community structures and self help groups through the Anganwadi centres.

The primary responsibility for the implementation of the programme lies with the Social Justice and Empowerment Department of the state government and the beneficiaries are children below six years, pregnant and lactating women and women in the age group of 15 to 44 years.

He said it was launched for the purpose of improving the nutritional and health status of children, in the age group of 0-6 years, besides laying the foundation for their proper psychological, physical and social development. The scheme aims at reducing the incidence of mortality, morbidity, malnutrition and school dropout to achieve effective coordinated policy and its implementation amongst the various departments to promote child development.

One of its objectives is to enhance the capability of mothers in looking after the normal health and nutritional needs of children through proper education.

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