Dr. Anitha C T, Associate Professor, School of Medical Sciences, University of Hyderabad (UoH) is empaneled as National Resource Person (NRP) for Food, Nutrition, Health and WASH (FNHW; WASH is Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) (FNHW) theme. She is called up on to provide her valuable services and share her experience and expertise to support various State Rural Livelihoods Missions (SRLMs) in FNHW theme. Prof. B.R Shamanna is already an empaneled member. The two faculty members from the School of Medical Sciences would help, implement ‘Training, Capacity Building and Behaviour Change programs’ by providing critical inputs to the Trainers’ kits and help to reach out to SRLMs.

The National Institute of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj (NIRD&PR), an autonomous organization under the Union Ministry of Rural Development, is a premier national center of excellence in rural development and Panchayati Raj. The ministry is running a scheme – The Deen Dayal Antyodaya Yojana (DAY) – National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM) – Aajeevika. DAY-NRLM is promoting Self Help Groups of Women as a means of eliminating poverty and for empowering women. Poor health and nutrition are an important cause for continuing poverty. Loans taken for medical care are often high, and the pressure to return the loans leads to funds being channeled away from livelihoods.

NRLM’s data from select States also shows that loans for health and nutrition purposes form the majority of consumption loans. A set of Food, Nutrition, Health and WASH (FNHW; WASH is Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) interventions at the community level lead to better health and nutrition. DAY: NRLM recognizes the multifactorial cause of poverty, and initiatives in Food, Nutrition, Health and WASH (FNHW) are designed to contribute to reduced medical expenditure, and improve the quality of life of women and their families. The approach is to converge with the ongoing programmes of the National Health Mission (NHM), the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS), and the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (SBA); and empower women to realize their entitlements, and also initiate necessary behaviour change.