All Anganwadi workers from 921 gram panchayats and 34 mandals of Vizianagaram district now have toilets in their homes. This has been verified by the Project Director of the District Women and Child Development Agency, according to Nodal Officer and CEO of the Zilla Panchayat.
Anganwadi workers are key public representatives in the villages. They are appointed under the central government’s Integrated Child Development Service (ICDS) Scheme which operates at state level to address health issues of small children such as immunization, nutrition, pre-school non formal education, child care and other health issues. In fact, they are the primary motivators and campaigners for better hygiene and health.
When it comes to the Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin), Anganwadi workers play a very significant role at the village level in mobilizing and motivating the community towards bringing about behaviour change and ensuring that the families build and use toilets. However, at the end of 2016, as many as 1359 Anganwadi workers and helpers in the district did not have toilets in their homes.
The district officials realized that for Anganwadi workers to advocate the use of toilets, it must be mandatory for them to have toilets in their homes. In this regard, they convened a workshop for the Anganwadi workers and advised all those who had no toilets to get one built at home.
To hasten the process, there was effective convergence and quick coordination among the various departments of the district and together with timely and efficient completion of procedures by the officials, all homes of Anganwadi workers have toilets today.
We are hopeful that this intervention would further promote the Swachh Bharat Mission in the district in inspiring the community to join the mission of making their villages and the whole district ODF in the near future, the CEO of the Zilla Panchayat said.