Anganwadi Feeding

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In 2021, the Women and Child Development Ministry estimated that there are more than 32 lakh malnourished children in India. As per the National Family Health Survey (NFHS) IV, 35.7% of children in India are underweight. At a global level, around 35% of deaths among children below five are due to malnutrition. These statistics stress on the importance of nutritional programmes that help children right from their prenatal state till the first few years since birth.


Anganwadis are government-funded child and mother care development centres in India. They were started as a part of the government’s flagship Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) to improve the nutritional status of pregnant women, nursing mothers and children in the age group of 0-6. The objectives of the ICDS Scheme include:

  • to improve the nutritional and health status of children in the age group 0-6 years
  • to lay the foundation for the proper psychological, physical and social development of the child
  • to reduce the incidence of mortality, morbidity, malnutrition and school dropout
  • to achieve effective co-ordination of policy and implementation amongst the various departments to promote child development
  • to enhance the capability of the mother to look after the normal health and nutritional needs of the child through proper nutrition and health education

To ensure that the ICDS can keep up with the objectives, Anganwadi canters offer the following services:

  1. Supplementary nutrition
  2. Pre-school non-formal education
  3. Nutrition and health education
  4. Immunisation
  5. Health check-up
  6. Referral services

Currently, Akshaya Patra serves meals to 55,960 children at 2,405 Anganwadi centres in 4 locations of 3 states of India.

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