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Vice-President releases ‘The State of Young Child in India’ report

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Vice President released ‘The State of Young Child in India’ report - StartOn September 04, 2020, Vice President of India, Venkaiah Naidu released the inaugural issue of the report ‘The State of Young Child in India’ virtually. The report provides an account of challenges related to early child development (0-6 years) in India. 

The report has been prepared by Mobile Creches, a policy advocacy organisation which works with underprivileged children across India.

The report has also released the list of Best-performing states & worst-performing states based on the Young Child Outcomes Index.

Best-Performing State:

State  Index score (2015-16)
Kerala  0.858
Goa 0.817
Tripura 0.761
Tamil Nadu  0.731
Mizoram 0.719

Worst-Performing State:

State Index score (2015-16)
Bihar 0.452
Uttar Pradesh 0.46
Jharkhand 0.5
Madhya Pradesh 0.526
Chhattisgarh 0.555

Key Points:

i.According to the report, there 159 million children aged below 6 years in India out of them 21 per cent are undernourished, 36 per cent are underweight and 38 per cent do not receive full immunization.

ii.According to analysis on expense towards child nutrition, healthcare, education and other protection services, India has spent Rs 1,723 per child in 2018-2019, which is insufficient to reach the entire eligible population.

iii.The report introduced two indexes: Young Child Outcomes Index (YCOI) and Young Child Environment Index (YCEI).

Young Child Outcomes Index (YCOI):

i.The Young Child Outcomes Index (YCOI) measures health, nutrition and cognitive growth with help of indicators such as infant mortality rate, stunting and net attendance at the primary school level. 

ii.Based on the index, eight states have scored below the country’s average. They are Assam, Meghalaya, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

iii.The index was constructed for two time periods 2005-2006 & 2015-2016 to provide inter-state comparisons and also provides an idea of change over time.

Young Child Environment Index (YCEI):

i.The report has also developed another index called Young Child Environment Index (YCEI) to understand policy and environment enablers that influence a child’s well being. 

ii.It uses five policy enablers that influence child well-being outcomes which includes child well-being outcomes, including poverty alleviation, strengthening primary health care, improving education levels, safe water supply and promotion of gender equity.

iii.According to YCEI Index, Kerala, Goa, Sikkim, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh secured top five positions.The environment index was constructed for 2015–2016.

Schemes/programmes for Children Development:-

Government of India has introduced several comprehensive policies and flagship programmes.Some of notable schemes are:-

i.Ministry of Women and Child Development allocated additional funds for all children nutrition under the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS).

ii.National nutrition mission ( Poshan Abhiyaan) for Early Childhood Development.

iii.The Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK) is an important initiative for early identification and intervention for children from birth to 18 years to cover 4 ‘D’s — Defects at birth, Deficiencies, Diseases and Development delays including disability

iv.Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (BBBP) is equally important to ensure protection, education and empowerment of the girl child.

India has been making conscious efforts to meet the international commitments like the UN Convention on Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and the Convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women (CEDAW), and more importantly the sustainable development goals (SDG).

About Mobile Creches:-
The first ‘mobile creche’ was set up in 1969, at a construction site near Rajghat, in Delhi.
Chair Person – Ms. Amrita Jain
Motto – Nurturing childhood sowing change