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'Horlicks Ahaar Abhiyan' continues in West Bengal

Posted on May 28 2014 | IBNS

Kolkata, May 28 : Multinational pharmaceutical, biologics, vaccines and consumer healthcare company GlaxoSmithKline said it is continuing its endeavor to sensitize on the cause of malnutrition with its initiative 'Horlicks Ahaar Abhiyan' in West Bengal.

As a consumer participative campaign, with the sale of every bottle of Horlicks (of MRP greater than Rs. 100), the company contributes Re. 1 towards the initiative.

Proceeds from this campaign support a non-governmental organization (NGO) CARE India project, to improve nutritional status of 15,750 children of 3-6 years in two blocks of Purulia district in West Bengal.

Noted Bollywood actress and national award winner Vidya Balan continued to be the face of the campaign and pledged her support towards the cause.

According to the officials, over the years, the campaign has continued to gather strong support from the Horlicks consumers.

With the aim to address the issue of malnutrition, 'Horlicks Ahaar Abhiyan' has made a positive step towards supporting reduction of malnutrition among children through such projects, the officials said.

Through this initiative, more than Rs. 50 lakhs have been raised and deployed by CARE India towards implementing 'Project Briddhi' in Purulia district since 2013.

CARE India is implementing this project in coordination with the Department of Social Welfare, Government of West Bengal in the district and impacts about 15,750 children and total population of 3,34,361 along with 404 Aanganwadi Workers (AWC).

GlaxoSmithKline and CARE India will continue their fight against malnutrition with the funds raised from this campaign with help from all our supporters, the officials asserted.

The project undertaken in West Bengal has adopted a holistic approach towards improving the health and nutrition needs of children of 3-6 years.

As part of the campaign, facilitation for immunization, weighing and provision of supplementary nutrition to children, health check-ups, provision of deworming, iron supplementation etc., have prominently benefited the community.

Local language training modules and education on low cost nutrition, hygiene and cleanliness practices are some of the key initiatives undertaken.

A total of 801 frontline workers comprising of AWWs, ASHAs and Self Help Group members were trained on the basic management of children with severe and acute malnutrition under the project.

Commenting on the sustained campaign, Jayant Singh, Marketing Head, GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare, said, "We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has contributed to the success of this initiative. The problem of malnutrition and its long term impact on the future of our children in India continues to be a major issue."

Singh added, "We are proud to be associated with Horlicks Ahaar Abhiyan, which is making a meaningful and sustainable difference to the lives of 15,750 children. With the success and encouragement that we have received to drive Horlicks Ahaar Abhiyan, our movement to address the issue of malnutrition has become even stronger."

CARE India is one of the pioneers in the field of health and education, thereby playing a crucial role in the execution of the 'Horlicks Ahaar Abhiyan'.

Speaking on the same, Kamal Sharma, Executive Director, CARE India added, "It really concerns me to see children suffering from improper practices and ignorance leading to severe malnutrition. I believe a healthy childhood can give rise to a healthy future hence a conscious effort to ensure the wellbeing is initiated in all our projects."

Sharma said, "To do so the severely acutely malnourished (SAM) children are made to stay for 20 days, with their mothers in the Nutrition Rehabilitation Centres (NRC) and adopt proper hygiene and food habits. The change and adoption of the same is monitored time to time to ensure they are practised."

He added, "These mothers then become our change agents in the communities to inspire other community members to make that desired shift in the practises and attitudes. We are thankful to GlaxoSmithKline for supporting CARE India in reaching out to the most in need."

Vidya Balan, the face of the campaign said, "Horlicks Ahaar Abhiyan is a step towards handling a serious issue like malnutrition. I am proud and happy to be a part of this participative initiative that is slowly becoming a movement."

Balan said, "I sincerely hope that together, with the support of our people we can fight the issue and contribute to benefit the lives of young children and thereby to the future of our nation."

A similar programme has been actively undertaken in Tamil Nadu with 'Save The Children' in 20 non-notified slums of Chennai and additionally in another 15 villages in Tiruvallur district.

'Horlicks Ahaar Abhiyan' has also launched a social campaign to drive mass participation.

An online application #Helpachievedream went go on air from May 25 to encourage and invite participation and spread the message towards the cause.

Additionally, a television ad campaign to create awareness about the initiative is on air from May 28.

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