Abstract of Dissertation

Keyword : Anganwadi Centres; Integrated Child Development Services; ICDS; AWC

Objective : ï‚· To assess the facilities and services available at the AWCs ï‚· To assess the knowledge and practices of Anganwadi workers regarding the services being delivered through ICDS.

Background : Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme, which was introduced on experimental basis on 2nd October 1975, today represents one of the world’s largest programmes for early childhood development. ICDS is unique in several respects. It is uniquely Indian. A package of services comprising supplementary nutrition and growth monitoring; immunization; health check-up; health referral services; non-formal pre-school education and health and nutrition education to be provided at all Anganwadi Centres (AWCs). The key functionary of ICDS scheme is the Anganwadi worker, an honorary worker who belongs to the community and caters to a population of ∼1000 people each. After more than 35 years of its existence, the ICDS scheme stands as the world's most unique and largest community-based outreach system for women and child development. After the immense success in initial years, the scheme was universalized to the whole country during the 10th 5-year plan by the government of India. Thus, for the attainment of ICDS scheme goals, the Anganwadi worker at each AWC needs to be equipped with adequate infrastructure, functional equipment, tools and drugs. Furthermore, she should be aware of the norms regarding nutrition and other key services to be provided under the scheme.

Methodology : ï‚· Study Design: Descriptive; Cross- Sectional ï‚· Study Area: Chaka block of Allahabad District, Uttar Pradesh ï‚· Study Duration: 3 months (February 2016 to April 2016) ï‚· Study Population: Selected Anganwadi centres and Anganwadi workers ï‚· Source of Data: Primary ï‚· Sampling Method: Total AWC in Chaka block is 177. Out of 177 AWC, 20% of AWC were taken for operational feasibility which comes out to be 36. These 36 AWC were then selected through simple random sampling. ï‚· Sample Size: 36 AWC and AWW ï‚· Data Collection Technique: Personal Interview through structured Interview Schedule and Observation ï‚· Data Collection Tool: Pre- designed Structured Questionnaire ï‚· Data Analysis: MS- Excel

Findings : As per the findings of the study most of the Anganwadis were housed in primary school buildings. Most of the AWC do not have Electricity supply, and the major source of drinking water is hand pump. Toilets were available in a very few AWC. Only those AWC which have their own government building had a separate kitchen and space to keep food supplies and equipments. A major finding was that MUAC tape was not at all available in any of the AWCs. Out of 36 AWC, only 9 AWCs had properly functioning weighing machines. Take home ration supply was regular in all AWC. Knowledge of AWW was found to be partially correct as most of them had knowledge about IYCF practices and Growth monitoring technique.

Recommendations : This study showed a lack of facilities at the AWCs and partially correct knowledge of Anganwadi workers. Thus, a regular training and supportive supervision of the Anganwadi workers is recommended along with the availability of adequate facilities and infrastructures.

What is the existing status of infrastructure and services available at Anganwadi centres? What is the Knowledge and practices of Anganwadi workers regarding the services being delivered through ICDS?