New Delhi: India signed an agreement of 200-million dollar loan with the World Bank for the National Nutrition Mission (POSHAN Abhiyaan) for 315 districts across all states and union territories. It would help the government in achieving its goal of reducing stunting in children 0-6 years of age from 38.4 percent to 25 percent by the year 2022. POSHAN Abhiyaan was launched by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi in March this year.

A large component of POSHAN Abhiyaan involves gradual scaling-up of the interventions supported by the ongoing World Bank assisted Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Systems Strengthening and Nutrition Improvement Project (ISSNIP) to all districts in the country over a 3-year period.

It will focus on improving the coverage and quality of ICDS nutrition services to pregnant and lactating women and children less than 3 years of age. The project will include investments in improving the skills and capacities of ICDS staff and community nutrition workers, instituting mechanisms of community mobilization and management of services for better outreach to beneficiaries for nutrition impact.

The project will additionally ensure convergence of all nutrition-related schemes and provide performance-based incentives to states and community nutrition and health workers, facilitating a focus on results.