NOTE: This article is not talking about how to increase food production and what are the different mechanism/policy government needs to take to address it. We are here talking about on how we can take some simple precautionary steps in which we just not only create awareness but also address the issue of malnutrition and hunger deaths and make government accountable and responsible for its very purpose of coming to power to serve the people of its country.
There could be many reason for malnutrition and hunger death from poverty to government policy to low production to high cost of food items to lack of good quality food particles to lack of income, but here let us focus on two reasons like:
Lack of awareness of what is malnutrition/hunger death (For example: like what to eat, how much to eat, what kind of food has more source of nutrition).
Lack of knowledge on whom to, how to and where to inform about the malnutrition/hunger cases.
“Precaution is better than cure” This proverb is something which many of us believe in and also practice it in few cases. So if we have come to know about the possible cases we at least can try to reduce the cases initially and later on complete stop the hunger/malnutrition death. But there are large numbers of people who are not even aware whether a child is malnourished or not, so in such cases the chance of curing or acting upon to avoid it does not arise at all. So here let us make another attempt to address it by involving the school and college students who are most true, sincere, and honest. Let us see below how we can address such an important issue.
Action plan to address the hunger/malnourished deaths:
• WHAT TO DO: Create awareness and sensitization: On hunger/malnutrition death to school children from upper primary/middle level/high school and the college students.
• HOW TO DO: Create a team of likeminded youth/students: Volunteers (school and college students) to be selected from all the major towns and cities and these volunteers will be taking small sensitization sessions in the school and college, they will do it at probable once or twice in a week as their education should not be suffered.
• WHAT HAPPENS NEXT WHAT CHILDREN WILL DO: As we all know children are very fond of telling stories once they are back from school, college or after coming home from play ground, they tell parents about their friend’s, complaints, fighting, jocks, happy moments, victory, and defeats. During all this sharing’s Children/students will identify the potential cases like malnourished cases or child is suffering from hunger or inadequate number of food intake.
• WHERE DO THEY FIND FROM: They will identify from within their school, on way to school, near their home/play ground/colony/street.
• WHOM TO INFORM: Whom to inform about the potential identified cases: As we all know many are scared to inform about the things to people and more over we are talking about school and college students so the focal point will be there school/college principle or a specific allotted teacher for this task. Then it is the responsibility of the principle/teacher to inform about the case to the government officials at city/mandal/district/state officials.
Social media: Social Media can come here, as many students are using these, there can be a potential forum/group where they can give complaints and suggestion and this will be administered by the government officials or a particular department which undertake these issues. This will also act as a watch dog as all the complaints and number of action taken will be clearly mentioned here. This will bring out more accountability and transparency in addressing the cases.
• REWARDS: Appreciation for efforts: It is a Human Psychology that getting recognition to efforts and hard work gives immense satisfaction to any person. So, any children/student/youth who report malnutrition cases or any cases of hunger from there colony/locality/street/play ground they will be given small rewards like certificates, gifts, prizes, announcing their name in the school/college assembly or in their annual reports as a token of appreciation.
• SUPPORT FROM EDUCATION Dept/GOVERNMENT:
We can push for chapters on malnutrition and hunger in school syllabus. So the children from their school level come to know about it and infact the learning from school will help children to sensitize the parents.
Respective governments as per there convenience can establish a department to address the cases which they receive from the schools, colleges and take the necessary steps. We can here involve the NGOs in taking rehabilitation work.
By this at least the government departments cannot claim that they are not aware or they have not been informed about these cases in advance.
Photo: © UNICEF/NYHQ2011-0583/Olivier Asselin Cote d'Ivoire, 2011 On 3 May, a girl feeds her younger brother porridge at a food distribution point operated by the international NGO Action Contre la Faim and supported by UNICEF, at the Catholic Mission in the western town of Duékoué. Some 27,000 internally displaced people are living in the church compound. The site is very overcrowded, but conditions are slowly improving as aid agencies resume operations.