Filling the Nutrition Gap through Take Home Ration in India
Malnutrition in children is a multidimensional challenge caused by various factors, including inadequate infant and young child feeding practices. To combat this issue, the Government of India has launched several initiatives under the Integrated Child Development Services scheme, as part of Mission POSHAN 2.0.
The Integrated Child Development Services scheme focuses on enhancing the nutritional status of children under six years of age, pregnant women, lactating mothers, and adolescent girls. These efforts are facilitated through a network of government-owned Anganwadi Centres across the country. As part of the scheme, the distribution of Take Home Rations in the form of micronutrient-fortified blended foods and energy-dense foods plays a vital role in bridging the nutrition gap and improving infant and young child feeding practices.
In Maharashtra State, over 7.8 million beneficiaries are registered at 109,000+ Anganwadi Centres. Take Home Ration packets are distributed to various groups, including children aged six months to three years, pregnant women, lactating mothers, severely underweight children aged six months to six years, and adolescent girls in specific districts. However, the supply and distribution system of Take Home Rations face challenges related to timely delivery, maintaining quality, and ensuring transparency and efficiency.
Introducing the IT Solution Revolutionized the Supply Chain
Aligned with GIZ’s 2028 vision of integrated solutions and digital transformation, the Indo-German Securing Nutrition, Enhancing Resilience project has collaborated with the Department of Women and Child Development in Maharashtra to develop a groundbreaking IT solution known as the Food Supply Monitoring System. This solution aims to enhance transparency and efficiency within the entire Take Home Ration supply chain.
The Food Supply Monitoring System comprises a user-friendly web application and a mobile app. This comprehensive solution serves department officials at both state and district levels, Take Home Ration suppliers, and Anganwadi Workers. The web application enables demand generation based on beneficiary count and category, supply order generation, dashboards, and delivery status reports. The mobile app facilitates the recording of Take Home Ration packet receipts at Anganwadi Centres, accurately reflecting the quantities ordered. Moreover, it allows users to capture reasons for rejecting deliveries with quality issues. The mobile application works seamlessly in both online and offline modes.
To ensure ease of use, the solution supports multiple languages, including Marathi, Hindi, and English. Currently, the solution is being piloted in two districts, Thane and Palghar, with comprehensive training provided to the users in these areas.