Working Together to End Malnutrition

It is sad that India has one of the highest Malnutrition rates in the world, double that of Sub-Saharan Africa and 5 times more than China. Almost half of India’s children are underweight, 75% are anemic and 57% are vitamin A deficient.  MLDT’s intervention area is no exception to this rule. Palghar district is (in)famous for high malnutrition among children.

Why is it important to address Malnutrition in a community ?

-Malnutrition stunts a child’s growth, impacting physical and intellectual growth forever
-Malnutrition and Anemia are a multifactorial problem operating differently at different age groups
-The state of malnutrition and anemia has a longstanding impact on the health of the Female & children
-Children are the future of any community, their health impacts the progress of their community
-Malnourished children are more prone to infections which is not good for the child nor the community


Project Location  – Bhopoli Region •Palghar District • Maharashtra State • India
Executive Summary of Problem and Intervention: In Maharashtra, 35% of the children have stunted growth, 18.6% wasting and 25.2% are underweight.  This is a serious problem. 

Our Strategy to Cure Malnutrition

-Treat Malnutrition in Mother and Child -1,000 days of Mother Care, 1,000 days of Child Care
-Preventing Anemia in Mothers of tomorrow, prevents low birth weight babies and malnutrition at birth

-Preventing Anemia in Mothers of tomorrow by screening and treating adolescent girls

Annual Project Cost: $113,500 per year
Number of Beneficiaries4,000 (children, mothers, mothers-to-be, adolescent girls) in 25 villages
2023-2024 Budget Needs for Program: $113,500


Needless to say that it is a multidimensional problem, both in its causes and in its implications. Our analysis and study revealed main causes of malnutrition as:

1. Early age marriages and early age pregnancies
2. Anemic mother-to-be
3. Lack of care and attention during pregnancy
4. Home delivery under unhygienic conditions
5. Improper breastfeeding and poor child hygiene
6. Inadequate diet to the child
7. Lack of tendency to seek medical advice esp. for children
8. Lack of knowledge of symptoms indicating malnutrition
9. Ignoring persistent infections and ailments thinking it as ‘normal’ during child growth.

Undoubtedly this needed a multidimensional solution too. We understood that the malnutrition in child is a result of anemic mother, improper care during pregnancy lactation and lack of suitable diet & care during early years. Hence we devised a solution plan starting at the root cause and going towards end result i.e.

1.  Reduce Anemia in Adolescent girls (i.e. tomorrow’s mothers-to-be)

· Increase awareness of Anemia, its causes and effects
· Increase awareness of menstruation and hygiene
· Test for Anemia
· Provide treatment, supplements and information about diet
· Repeat test & treatment after three months, if necessary

This resulted in reducing anemia in over 75% of the girls. Their overall health and scholastic performance improved substantially. See More (Anemia) …

2.  Mother & Child Care

· Gain trust of the community
· Not to go against cultural issues such as early age marriage
· Through informal conversation impart importance of care during pregnancy and delivery at hospital
· Provide Antenatal care i.e. routine tests, iron, folic and protein supplements
· Provide facility, transport, hospital care for delivery
· Provide training on breastfeeding and child hygiene
· Provide Postnatal care i.e. mother & child routine check-up and protein supplements

These steps ensured healthy pregnancy, safe delivery, increase in child’s weight at birth, noticeable growth of child during early age. See More (Mother and Child)….

3. Tackling Malnutrition

· Examine every child door to door until 2 years of age
· Examine every child in anganwadis (rural childcare centers) from age 2 to 6
· Monitor on WHO defined growth parameters
· Refer Severely Malnourished children to Government Centre (that is the law)
· Define individual case for each Moderately Malnourished child
· Define a treatment plan
· Train Anganwadi Assistant and mothers to follow the plan and monitor the progress
· Follow up every 15 days
· Redefine the treatment plan if necessary
· Train Anganwadi Assistant and mothers recipes using locally available nutritious ingredients.

At the end of six years, 15% of the children are completely out of malnourished zone, 62% of the children have shown significant improvement in the malnutrition grades, chronic occurrence of infection has reduced substantially.  


Malnutrition stunts a child’s growth, impacting physical and intellectual growth forever. If we work together, we can break this cycle so that these children are healthy and reach their maximum potential.


Malnutrition & Anemia

The two major monsters for tribal communities in India are malnutrition and anemia. They debilitate the community and the effects are seen for generations to come.

Young, anemic, malnourished mothers give birth to low birth weight malnourished babies.  The babies  struggle medically for years, are vulnerable to infectious diseases and never reach their growth potential.

To address this problem, we have implemented an integrated strategy to treat and prevent malnutrition and anemia by focusing for 1,000 days on the mother and 1,000 days on the child.

UNICEF & Homeopathic

Malnourished infants and young children are treated using homeopathic treatments and UNICEF guidelines for the first 1,000 days of life to give infants the best chance to recover from malnutrition.

Pregnant mothers and lactating mothers are provided supplements and critical education to ensure good health of the mother and the child.

To prevent malnutrition at birth we screen for and treat anemia in adolescent girls who are the mothers of tomorrow.

Our ultimate goal is a healthy pregnant woman who gives birth to a normal birth weight baby and a lactating mother who knows the value of good nutrition for her and her growing infant.

How you can  help!

We hope you will join our team so that we can work together to END Malnutrition.

Thank you for your help and support to End Malnutrition.

Please visit our DONATE Page for all of the ways you can make a donation to END Malnutrition.

For more information about Dr.  M.L. Dhawale Memorial Trust activities please click here

Questions? Contact Hemakshi at or call  503.583.2576