Developing Indigenous Resources, Punjab

By Baker Johnson

Headquartered in Mohali, Punjab, Developing Indigenous Resources (DIR) works in the Nayagaon slum area on the peripheries of Chandigarh. DIR focuses on maternal and child health and early childhood education. Through a group of health promoters (selected and trained from the community), DIR monitors the health of under-five children and counsels new and to-be mothers on immunization and nutrition. The organization also engages with women from the community through activities like health education and demonstration of low-cost nutritious meals.

The organization also goes to great lengths to ensure that children and mothers, who are malnourished and cannot afford nutritious food, receive a hot cooked meal at their center daily.

Dr Asha Katoch, who leads DIR, says, “Since the members of the team belong to the community, the buy-in when introducing interventions has been smooth. This has proven to be helpful especially when creating awareness around evidence-based nutrition interventions like vitamin A supplementation and deworming (VAS+D) for under-five children.”

Over the years, the organization has observed that this has led to a steady demand of VAS+D from the community, ensuring their children receive biannual doses in a timely manner.

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