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West Bengal raises hands to help children 'survive five'

Posted on May 23 2014 | IBNS

Kolkata, May 23 : As part of the Global Week of Action campaign launched by World Vision India this week, people from all walks of life in West Bengal raised hands and organised awareness events to help India's children 'Survive 5'.

The campaign aimed at spreading the message of right nutrition for children below five and young mothers.

A child's fifth birthday, in particular, is a milestone that more than 6.6 million children every year do not live to see, due to malnutrition.

The campaign brought together people, organisations, governments and businesses to work with renewed focus and energy across the nation. Various events like plays, sports events, school presentations, exhibitions, rallies, marathons and flash mobs were organised in many other parts of the country.

More than a lakh people across the country have raised hands in support of the campaign so far.

The campaign was lead by children and community people in many parts of Kolkata like Medi bagan, AJC Bose Road, Ahiripukur and central Kolkata. People in other parts of the state like Darjeeling, Burdwan, Murshidabad and 24 South Parganas also joined the campaign. School children were in the forefront and raised their hands to support the campaign. Panchayat leaders, ICDS and aganwadi workers, community people in many villages were made aware of the importance of right nutrition for children below five and young mothers.

The under-five mortality rate in India has decreased over the last decade, to 52 per 1000 live births compared to 85 in 2003, while the infant mortality has decreased from 60 in 2003 to 42 in 2013. More children died during their early days of life, within the first month of birth.

Jayakumar Christian, CEO and National Director, World Vision India pointed out that Child Health Now is not just about a week of action but about yet another opportunity to promote and drive sustained dialogue and action. "We need action not just in the corridors of power but also across levels so that it positively impacts the poor at the grassroots level across India and the world."

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