India, September 2004
WFPs activities have the objective to enable young children and expectant and nursing mothers to meet their special nutritional and nutrition-related health needs.
The overall goal is to reduce malnutrition and promote early childhood development by directly reaching expectant and nursing mothers, and young children. The key initiatives for achieving this long-term objective are the distribution of a nutritious food and strengthening of the management
capacity and strategies of the service providers. Activities are community-based, and the participation of women’s groups is a key component.
In order to increase the intake of nutritious food among 2.6 million vulnerable children and women, WFP is distributing daily supplementary rations of blended food in 38,610 centres located in five of the poorest states in India. In addition to providing supplementary feeding, WFP is actively working with the Government to improve the effectiveness of ICDS through better targeting, community participation and capacity-building. Different food distribution strategies are being used to strengthen attendance and encourage mothers to use health services, to attend nutritional and
health education sessions, and comply with recommendations given. The project continues to organize activities promoting community level monitoring with the support of grass-roots
organizations and local NGOs.One of the major problems in India is the lack of education and the knowledge of key caring
practices and nutritional care. Improvement of Food Security in Tribal Areas have successfully complemented the feeding
aspect by developing a community-based childcare approach, promoting nutritional messages through awareness campaigns.
Photo: WFP/Rein Skullerud