Would you eat food with worms?

Would you eat food with worms in it? What about uncooked rice? Or raw flatbread? I'm guessing your answer is no. Children studying at the government primary school in Batiyagarh, Damoh, Madhya Pradesh, are forced daily to consume such sub-standard food. Not only do they have to eat half-cooked meals, food distribution at their school is likened to paratroopers flinging food packets at disaster victims. Hordes of students have to fight for food because it's inadequate for all, leaving many of them hungry. However, many choose to remain hungry given the sub- standard food being offered. The female students of this school have the hardest time, given their difficulty in participating in mob mentality at lunchtime. VV-PACS Correspondent Arti Bai Valimiki reports. Chandabai's daughters study in this school. She weaves baskets to earn a living, while her husband is a daily wage earner who often stints as a laborer at a construction site. There are times when Chandabai is unable to provide food for her children and she finds solace in the thought that they will get food in the school. The Government of India did take a big step forward when they implemented the mid day meal scheme which provides food for children in government school's across India. Sadly, it's effectiveness is often hampered by management and contractors. In another video, CC Anita had documented how the in-charge of a school is deliberately delaying and swindling rations for mid day meals. At times the authorities do not know about existence of an issue and there are times when they choose to turn a blind eye. Regardless of their choice, it is imperative that the students get proper food, as mandated by the government for better provision of nutrition for the the children. Community correspondent Artibai Valmik gathered a group of concerned mothers who submitted an application to the Block Education Clerk, Dhansingh Chaudhary. They also got sample of food from school as evidence to make their case stronger. CC Artibai had already documented the issue and had testimonies not only from parents but from the children themselves who were more than happy to have their problem solved. He has promised to conduct an investigation and solve all the issues raised by the women in the application. After the video was shown to the authorities, an investigation was conducted. Today, the children at the school are receiving food as per the guidelines of the mid-day meal scheme. To know how CC Artibai got the community involved and mobilized their power to create change, watch this space for the impact video. About the Partnership: The Poorest Areas Civil Society (PACS) Programme and Video Volunteers have come together to create the Community Correspondents Network. The videos generated by the network will be able to highlight voices from the margins, providing skills to social communicators to provide advocacy tools to community based organisations.

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Livelihood at stake in Chatra

 
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