The government has decided to extend the Rs. 10,000 nutrition package provided for 10 months to 24 months to improve the nutritional status of pregnant mothers in our country, the Environment Minister said.
While addressing an event held in Hambantota to distribute a nutrition package to 3000 malnourished pregnant mothers in the district, Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said the government has spent Rs. 4,000 million so far on this programme.
At the recent budget it has been increased by Rs. 5,000 million to the existing Rs. 5,000 million, he said.
“There is a nutritional issue among the people of our country. Today, the prices of vegetables, fish, meat, and even rice have gone up. Also, the need of financial needs of the public has also decreased. So it may be ridiculous to talk about maintaining nutritional status, ” he said.
But if nutrition programmes for pregnant mothers are not implemented, malnutrition can lead to physical and mental issues to the foetus, he said.
“An intelligent generation is created by a healthy generation of children. Also, our villages still have the potential to provide naturally nutritious food and beverages ” Minister Amaraweera added. (Chaturanga Samarawickama)