Malnutrition is a harsh reality for many children in the Koraput District.
56% of children in Koraput district are underweight. Traditional eating practices, such as favoring boys when food is being served, are part of the problem. In addition, many villages are too remote to receive visits from health workers and lack information on nutrition and sanitation that could dramatically improve their diets. Our program goal is to prevent low birth weight, sustain the growth of children, and reduce malnutrition among children under five.
Positive Deviance (PD) Hearth Approach
Using the PD Hearth approach, we bring mothers and caretakers together to determine how to maximize the benefits of their existing resources and skills to overcome nutrition problems. This approach has successfully changed the status of over 400 children in our target villages from malnourished to normal weight. We are continuing to spread the success of the program to more villages as we train self-help group mothers, midwives, and other stakeholders on the approach.
We are training government health workers, village-level volunteers, service providers, midwives, mothers, social activists and others on how to identify and respond to early signs of malnutrition and how to monitor child growth. We also organize health fairs where mothers can meet with experts and refer to our resource table with educational tools.
We have supported the development of poultry-rearing projects, kitchen gardens, and cultivation of green vegetables.