To improve nutrition status of pregnant mothers & children Meghalaya introduces boiled eggs as part of supplementary nutrition programme

Shillong, Aug 17: The Meghalaya Early Childhood Development Mission (MECDM), in collaboration with Department of Social Welfare (DSW) and Meghalaya State Rural Livelihood Society (MSRLS) introduced boiled eggs to the existing Supplementary Nutrition Programme (SNP) on August 15 in 250 Model Anganwadi Centers (AWC’s), which is targeted to benefit 13,000 beneficiaries in the first phase.

This is an addition to the hot cooked meals provided by ICDS centers to children between the age group of 3 – 6 years, pregnant and lactating mothers across 46 blocks within the state.

The introduction of egg distribution is facilitated because eggs are known to be a good source of protein, iron, vitamin A, D, E&K, choline and Omega 3 fatty acids which boosts brain development and overall well-being amongst children.

It is noteworthy to mention that this is the first time that distribution of boiled eggs is being initiated under the Meghalaya ECD Mission in collaboration with the Department of Social Welfare, Government of Meghalaya.

Commenting on the initiative, Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma said, “This is our endeavour to ensure children, pregnant and lactating mothers receive adequate nutrition in their hot cooked meals at the Anganwadi Centers (AWCs). This initiative also involves our Self Help Groups (SHGs) promoted by NRLM who supply eggs to the AWCs.”

The ECD Mission has rolled out the provision of eggs on a pilot basis for an interim period of three months, August 15, 2022 to 15th November 2022.

The supply of eggs will eventually be rolled out across all AWC’s and uncovered villages in a phase manner through a decentralized procurement process in line with Asian Development Bank Procurement Guidelines under Meghalaya ECD Mission.

The egg distribution has been rolled out across all districts in 250 anganwadi centers with 150 SHGs and 26 VO’s promoted under NRLM engaged in the implementation, 10,732 children and 2,924 pregnant and nursing mothers benefitted from this roll out.

The Meghalaya Early Childhood Development Mission is a mission focused on providing motor & cognitive development, socio-emotional development, health & nutrition and early education development as key areas for the holistic development of children in Meghalaya. It may be mentioned that the Meghalaya Early Childhood Development Mission is catering to 1,554 villages, which are not being covered under the ICDS programme.

The Meghalaya ECD mission follows a collaborative approach from Health, Social Welfare, Education, Community & Rural Development departments of the State.