By Tania Lal
A report by UNICEF India in January 2009 found that about a million neonatal deaths occur in the country each year. Uttar Pradesh (U.P.) has the largest population of any state in India and continuing problems with neonatal mortality. In an effort to tackle this problem PATH India with funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has initiated Sure Start, a five year project that works with a population of roughly 25 million. The program is described on our website at http://www.path.org/projects/sure-start.php.
A major contributor to these death rates is the lack of literacy and awareness that exists in the rural areas of the country. For example, the benefits of immediate and exclusive breastfeeding are not well understood. For this purpose Sure Start in U.P. works with community health workers and facilitates the functioning of village health and sanitation committees. Continue reading “‘Sure Start’ in India Mobilises Communities for Maternal and Neonatal Health”