The Aarambh model (‘the beginning’) is a community-based programme to support nurturing care and uses the WHO/UNICEF Care for Child Development package. Implemented by the Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences, Sevagram, it engages frontline workers from the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) and health sector along with community groups. The model utilises existing platforms in which frontline workers from the ICDS, health and other sectors support caregivers to provide their young children nurturing care.

The initial pilot was undertaken in one district in Maharashtra, India – and tested in a population of 10 000 people. Based on early findings it was extended to 100 000 people within a year. Over the next two years of implementation, while collecting evidence of positive impacts on caregiving practices and documenting lessons learned about feasibility, interventions were further adapted. The Aarambh model was then scaled up to 10 community development blocks across two districts covering a population of 1.2 million, during which further adjustments were made.

Building on the results, state authorities have now committed to statewide implementation engaging 167 000 frontline workers and 7 000 supervisors to cover a population of approximately 125 million.

?? Excerpt from Nurturing care handbook. Strategic action 5: scale up and innovate. How to expand programmes, engage with the private sector and use digital solutions.


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