‘Healthy Mother, Healthy Child’ awareness drive ends

Women encouraged to prioritise breastfeeding over formula milk

Jamil Mirza April 16, 2024


A one-week intensive awareness campaign, under which 6,000 women were registered in the Benazir Income Support Program (BISP) from the Rawalpindi division, has come to an end.

The initiative was aimed at advocating for maternal and child health and promoting breastfeeding and ensuring access to nutritious food. The slogan for the drive was to promote the idea of ‘healthy mother and healthy.

To achieve the target, women were encouraged to prioritise breastfeeding over formula milk and ensure the consumption of nutritious food. A full awareness campaign was conducted for the development programme under the Facilitation Centre to be established in Tehsil Headquarters of Kahuta, Murree, Kotli Satian, Wah Cantt, Gujar Khan, Kalar Syedan.

Under the supervision of Dr Naveed Malik, Coordinator of the Integrated Reproductive Maternal Newborn Child Health and Nutrition Programme (IRMNCH), and with support from Monitoring Officer Junaid, a series of activities were organised from April 1st to April 6th. These activities targeted pregnant women registered under BISP and those seeking registration, providing financial assistance and health guidelines for themselves and their children.

Over 200 sessions were conducted across various centres, complemented by walk-in seminars at 30 locations and awareness campaigns in educational institutions. Central to the message was the importance of breastfeeding over formula milk for infant health, alongside advocating for a nutritious diet during pregnancy and postpartum.

Dr Naveed Malik stressed the aim of enrolling 20,000-22,000 breastfeeding women into the BISP, offering financial aid for medications and nutritious food while discouraging the use of formula milk. Lady health workers were actively engaged in disseminating awareness regarding the importance of breastfeeding. Dr Malik said that women enrolled in the BISP are taught about the advantages of breastfeeding, which guarantees the well-being of both mothers and their children.

Dr Ijaz Ahmed, Chief Executive Officer of the District Health Authority (DHA), highlighted the significance of the mother and child development programme within BISP. With community support, DHA is operating eight Facilitation Centres for new registrations and reaching out to women already enrolled.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 17th, 2024.


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