People Helped in 2018: 75,530
With one of the fastest growing economies, India is now the one of the top five of the world’s largest economies, and is showing continuous improvement with a high life expectancy, literacy rate, and health conditions. Among the country’s 1.2 billion inhabitants the conditions for those living in poorer regions are comparable to those of some of the world’s poorest countries.
Improved food security and access has led to fewer malnourished and anaemic Indians in 2017 than in the preceding decade. However, the 2018 Global Nutrition Report has shown that India needs to do much more to meet its nutrition goals. India is currently not on track to achieve any of the World Health Organization’s nine nutrition goals by 2025, among which reducing child overweight, wasting and stunting, diabetes among women and men, anaemia in women of reproductive age and obesity among women and men, and increasing exclusive breastfeeding.
Although India has shown improvement in reducing child stunting, with 46.6 million stunted children the country is still home to over 30.9% of all stunted children under five, the highest rate in the world. Undernutrition in India is the product of the usual suspects: widespread poverty, endemic hunger, rapid population growth, pockets of weak governance, poor health systems and unreliable national indicators, all of which are compounded by issues of caste, ethnicity, religion and gender. Furthermore, India has shown no progress with regards to six other global nutrition goals. There is a strong need to reduce these numbers, as India still bears 23.8% of the global burden of malnutrition.
The important work we do in India has long been recognized by the Indian Government. This year, we signed an agreement with the state of Chhattisgarh government to offer technical support in the fight against malnutrition. Action Against Hunger is a well-known organization in the country, and thus many government technical support units are keen to partner with us to implement their projects in the states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra.
This year, we successfully completed a Community Management of Acute Malnutrition program with the Government of Rajasthan. For this project, we received the ‘most promising’ award in the category Zero Hunger of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, from an independent group of think tanks on corporate responsibility and social sector champions. The advocacy team also received an award from the Chief Minister of Uttarakhand state, for Public Relations in Action for Nutrition.