Home Press Release Rural development program ‘Rural Rising’ aimed at children’s nutrition implemented at Wayanad,...

Rural development program ‘Rural Rising’ aimed at children’s nutrition implemented at Wayanad, Kerala

Bengaluru, India: Herbalife Nutrition Ltd., United Way of Bengaluru (UWBe), and the Noolpuzha Gram Panchayat have come together with a vision to ensure integrated development of the Noolpuzha Gram Panchayat, Wayanad’s second largest tribal belt.
This integrated rural development program, called ‘Rural Rising’, is a flagship intervention of UWBe, built on a ‘convergence model’ where the program is implemented in aspirational districts and remote areas in various geographies in alignment with government schemes and implemented in partnership with government and private partners.
NITI Aayog has identified districts in each state as aspirational districts and a clear framework has been given on which the districts need to work. Wayanad is one of the aspirational districts in Kerala, and UWBe through the Rural Rising initiative aims to support the government in achieving the milestones. This will be a landmark project in demonstrating effective Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) in the development of communities.
The multi-year Rural Rising program in Noolpuzha Gram Panchayat (GP) will address five key areas based on the need assessment – enhancement of children’s nutrition; quality of engagement with children in Anganwadi Centres through the Born Learning Campaign (BLC) of UWBe; strengthening the schools to retain and attract students from tribal hamlets; supporting the livelihood of women in Self Help Groups (SHGs) and skill development of youth in the areas of intervention.
The intervention has been kick-started today. An MOU has been signed between Noolpuzha GP and UWBe. Delegates from Noopuzha Panchayat who attended the event include Ms sheeja Satheesh, Panchyath President; Mr. N A Usman, Vice President; Mr. Vanamalika, Trible Society President. The event was also graced by Mr. Afsath, Program Officer ICDS; and Rajesh Krishnan, CEO from United Way Bengaluru along with his team.
“Extending ones mind and hand together to the downtrodden is amazing and the need of the day. Health of the children and women in the tribal hamlets is a matter of serious concern. Herbalife Nutrition and United Way Bengaluru has such an iron nerve and mind to make innovative and active intervention to fulfill the need of health and nutrition and Early Childhood Care and Education. The intervention by Herbalife Nutrition and the United Way Bengaluru in Noolpuzha
Panchayath of Wayanad District is absolutely meaningful and appreciable.”, said T. Hafsath, DPO ICDS, Wayanad.
Most children with malnutrition in Wayanad have been reported from tribal communities. Children and women suffer from nutrition deficiency and anaemia due to a lack of a proper and balanced diet. The Rural Rising intervention will ensure the availability of cooked meals thrice a day, six days a week, to children enrolled in four Anganwadi Centres, to begin with, at Noolpuzha.
Low attendance of students in schools and Anganwadi Centres have been another concerning issue. To make schools attractive and welcoming, play areas will be set up in two schools – Govt Lower Primary School, Muthanga, and Sri Jaya Aided Lower Primary School, catering to 250 students.
In addition, two Anganwadi Centres will be strengthened with new facilities and infrastructure support to make the centres safe and conducive for children in line with the ICDS guidelines. Additionally, Anganwadi Workers and Helpers will be trained on the Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) curriculum and pedagogy.
The intervention will closely work with the Jilla Mission of Wayanad. Three hundred executive members of registered SHGs in Noolpuzha GP will be provided training in entrepreneurship development. Specific livelihood interventions will be provided to other SHGs.
Interventions ranging from providing grinding equipment to setting up of a grocery store are planned for various SHGs. To support the locals engaging in honey collection, eighty honey collectors will be supported with honey harvesting kits containing modernised tools to help increase their productivity and ensure safety. Apart from these, skilling programs will be provided to special people from the ‘BUDS’ Centre to help them generate income and live with dignity. Overall about 650 SHG members will be directly benefitted from the livelihood interventions.
Sports has been recognised as a powerful medium to instill positive social skills, leadership qualities, self-awareness, and creativity. For the well-being of community youth and to help them utilise their time judiciously, football coaching will be offered at the existing two Youth Resource Centres. The sports centres will also be equipped with different types of sports equipment and books for the youth and children of the community.
“Herbalife is committed to helping tackle the global challenges of hunger, food insecurity, and malnutrition. Through our ‘Nutrition for Zero Hunger initiative’, we are focused on building community to reduce food insecurity, increase access to healthy food, and provide nutritional education to eliminate malnutrition among the tribal population. The Rural Rising intervention from United Way of Bengaluru is an excellent opportunity for us to reach out to the tribal communities in Wayanad, an aspirational district and as identified by Niti Aayog. We are glad to collaborate with United Way Bengaluru and look forward to a long-term engagement.”, said Amit Khanna, Country Head, Herbalife Nutrition India.
“Aligned to the UN Sustainable Goals and connected to Mission Antyodaya, this multi-year intervention has been shaped with coherent and measurable yearly milestones, built on a partnership model where the responsibility of village-level development will be shared by all the key stakeholders making this program sustainable.”, said Rajesh Krishnan, Chief Executive Officer, United Way of Bengaluru.



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