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Last week Save the Children released a report entitled ‘A Life Free From Hunger’ and in it they declare that 48% of children in India are stunted in their growth due to malnutrition. Although this is an aggregated number and doesn’t account for regional differences in such a large and diverse country – with over 28 different states – it also reveals the dire condition many people in India are still living in. India is now the World’s 10th largest economy and has an obligation to look after their most vulnerable and destitute people.
Malnutrition is not only a problem for physical growth it also severely prevents individuals and families from being able to work. The report says
“The economic losses due to undernutrition are also pervasive – experimental evidence suggests that tackling malnutrition in early life can lead to as much as a 46% increase in earnings as an adult. Productivity loss due to foregone waged employment was estimated to be US$2.3 billion a year in India”
Save the Children – A life Free from Hunger Feb 2012
At SCAD we work tirelessly to make sure that the communities in the Tirunelveli, Tuticorin and Kanyakumari districts of Tamil Nadu do not suffer from severe malnutrition and therefore stress on their earning capacity. Global food prices are increasing, UNFAO says that a basket of food is nearly 37% higher now than it was in June 2010 and this is an added pressure to poor and remote rural communities.
– helping over 2,500 women to plant kitchen gardens and grow nutritious food for themselves saving up to RS2,000 per month
– planting between 80,000 – 100,000 indigenous trees per year – many with nutritional qualities
– teaching children about growing food in their schools and training in nutritional supplements
– ensuring mothers and babies get the nutrients that they need to support healthy growth
To see more about the amazing work our women’s self help groups are doing with kitchen gardens please watch this video