Chhattisgarh has a statewide program using community health workers called mitanins. The National Rural Health Mission organizes the payment of small stipends to the mitanins through the panchayats and recognizes them as accredited social health activists. The mitanins enjoy a high level of credibility with local communities through their leadership of Village Health, Sanitation and Nutrition Committees, which play an active role in monitoring the status, services, and behaviors related to the village’s nutrition and health.
In 2012, to address the issue of undernutrition and harness the strengths of the actors working in the area, the State Health Resource Centre, Chhattisgarh, a nongovernmental organization providing long-term technical capacity to the Department of Health and Family Welfare, began working with the panchayats of Surguja to create community-managed feeding and daycare centers called Fulwari. This Implementation Note summarizes the experience of working with panchayats to form and lead the Fulwari and the benefits these have provided to date.