“Woman” the word does not mean only a female body, it contains different level of social stature and consciousness. Simon de Beauvoir said once, “One is not a born woman, one becomes a woman.” And becoming a woman is not a mere thing. A woman must go through several levels of obstacles to become successful in our hypocrite society. International Women’s Day represents and introduces us to those untold stories of countless unknown “VEERANGANAAS” who deliberately sacrifice everything only to serve the humankind.
It will be an act of belittling if we consider the term “Importance of Woman”.
We cannot survive without our mothers, daughters, wives, sisters and all those women who take care of us without our concerns. On this International Women’s Day, we would like to appreciate and enlighten the efforts of this kind of least recognized hard workers, who have dedicated themselves to serve their own motherland, The Anganwadi Workers. These women are striving over decades to build a healthy and educated India. The contribution of these Anganwadi Workers is as essential and as inspiring as our Jawans.
Anganwadi workers cover the grass-root level projects of Government of Andhra Pradesh. Under the department of Women Development and Child Welfare, Anganwadi Workers do their services for Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS). In Andhra Pradesh, there are total 55,607 Anganwadi Centres (AWC). Out of that 51,297AWCs are in rural areas and 4,310 AWCs are in the urban areas. AWC workers deal with the following services-
Early Childhood Care Education and Development (ECCED): The pre-school formal education is being given to this service. Besides this, they also focus on the early childhood nutrition and care. Pre-school kit is developed and supplied to all Anganwadi Centres with the help of experts like Andhra Mahila Sabha in Pre-school education.
Care and Nutrition Counselling: Under this activity comes Growth Monitoring, Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF), Maternal Care Counselling, Nutrition, Health & Hygiene Education, Monitoring & Promotion of Child Growth & Development, Community-based management of Severely & Moderately Underweight children.
Health Services: The Health Services are taken up in coordination with the Department of Health. The Anganwadi Worker enlists the beneficiaries for immunization and maintains close interaction and working relation with Asha Workers and ANM of Health Department to get the beneficiaries immunized. Periodical Health Check-ups are organized in village in consultation with medical and health officials. Distribution of SNP in the form of Take Home Ration (THR) which is distributed every fifteen days along with the health check-ups, weighing of babies and pregnant and lactating mothers and also imparting knowledge of health care.
Supplementary Nutrition Program: Supplementary Nutrition Programme (SNP) is the main component of ICDS to tackle malnutrition. SNP services are provided to the target groups of Pregnant & Lactating women and children between 7 months to 6 years.
Disability Welfare: Besides taking care of pregnant women and child, Anganwadi Workers also take a genteel and motherly care of the disabled ones. A new initiation in their lives is being made by these relentless women.
Women Development: to spread an awareness among the women that they are worthy of anything, to make them self-sufficient, to make them aware of their rights and duties Anganwadi Workers work hard under the scheme of Women Development. In schools (made only for women), in Anganwadi Centres, they spread the consciousness contumaciously.
7,000 new Anganwadi Centres would be established under MGNREGS during the year 2016-17. The Government of India and State Government are sanctioning Rs 7 lakhs for each Centre under this scheme. The estimation provides only Hall, kitchen, store, antenatal room and Toilet etc. with a total area of 600 square feet. The additional Rs 3 lakhs are required for the further interior development such as paintings the interiors and the face of walls.
In this field, the donation and initiative taken by the NRIs are really admiring. Under the influence and inspiration of Shri Jayaram Komati Garu, a handsome number of NRIs have come forward to donate for this Anganwadi centers and have acknowledged the hard work and dedication of the Anganwadi Workers. They have appreciated this as a great initiative and have contributed for the modernization of these centers.
Yes, it is developing. But there are more to be developed. Money is not the only thing which can bring the full growth. AWC workers need support and love. The infrastructure is still under the yardstick of satisfaction.
Swami Vivekananda said,” Everything else will come, we need human beings.” This quote is apt in here. They need more support and love than money. Those precious jewels of our country, who are striving to make a new healthy India throughout decades, need proper appreciation and support.
So, come let us join our hands in support of those restless and determined women, who are “mothering” our nation with all their hearts.