Although our country has developed at a fast rate over the past few decades, even today, lakhs of children don’t live till their 5th birthday. It’s extremely sad that most of these deaths occur due to easily preventable causes such as malnutrition, diarrhoea and pneumonia. It’s important that we have a robust health system in place that ensures good health for children and expectant mothers. Several NGOs have been working across India to improve the current health status of newborns, mothers and pregnant women. These programs lay focus on the disadvantaged communities that often suffer the most due to these social evils. Following are the major areas that need urgent attention:

Nutrition
Most children living in rural areas suffer from malnutrition, which often makes way for serious health issues. Poverty is the main cause of malnutrition among these children. Due to lack of basic necessities and insufficient diet, most children are either physically weak or suffer from various types of nutritional deficiencies. In a country like India that draws its major income from farming, it’s really disheartening to see that lakhs of kids still sleep on an empty stomach.

Maternal Health and Child Survival
Due to lack of proper health facilities and balanced diet many Indian children lose lives every year. While many children don’t survive a few weeks, others succumb to diseases that can be prevented or treated proactively. The issue of poor maternal health status also needs urgent attention. The health of a feeding mother directly affects her child’s health and overall growth. Due to inappropriate diet and less facilities, mothers are not able to keep themselves healthy enough to provide children with the right nutrition that a child derives from the mother’s milk.

NGOs and organisations like Save the Children have been working day and night to give these kids a bright future. The Community Health Workers associated with the NGO are trained to run and manage healthcare initiatives across the country. They move from village to village to educate people and children about the importance of proper hygiene, sanitation and nutrition. Expecting mothers are given medical health kits and professional advice regarding taking care of themselves and their babies. They are also vaccinated against various deadly diseases. It’s important for each one of us to join the movement and help these underprivileged kids build a better future for themselves and for the country.

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