One way AKDN is raising awareness about safe sanitation and key hygiene messages (as part of its …

AKDN / Christopher Wilton-Steer

Infant and young child feeding programme, Buniyaad, India.

AKDN / Mansi Midha

Meeting organised to raise awareness about key sanitation and personal hygiene messages. Una block, Gir …

AKDN / Christopher Wilton-Steer

In India, cultural stigmas often cause women and girls to run greater health risks because they lack the …

AKDN / Mansi Midha

languageSwitcherThis page is also available in

India | Health

2.2 million

2.2 million people per year receive nutritional screening and counselling

For the past three years, the Aga Khan Foundation and its partners in India have worked with 400,000 mothers from marginalised communities in rural Bihar, significantly improving infant and young child feeding practices.

AKDN / Mansi Midha

Reproductive and Child Health

Under the Reproductive and Child Health II scheme of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, AKHS is working with nearly 30,000 unserved or underserved people in nine villages of Kodinar Block, Junagadh District, Gujarat.

AKHS works to build the capacity of three field NGOs, through training, workshops, resource mobilisation and technical support to improve maternal and child health in the community at large. Efforts focus on:

  • increasing immunisation;

  • the coverage of complete antenatal care and institutional deliveries amongst pregnant women;

  • increasing the spacing between children;

  • increasing acceptance of family planning methods; and

  • promoting male participation.

In India, stigmatisation around menstruation has produced an immense gap in knowledge about menstruation and hygienic practices amongst women and girls, leading to increased health risks, absence from school and work, and loss of dignity. Menstrual Hygiene Management has been a core component of the AKDN Comprehensive Sanitation Initiative.

The School Health Education Programme aims to educate children on health through participatory, student-centred methods. The project has been successfully conducted in 25 Anjuman Islam Trust schools and in GauriDutt Mittal High School. The programme has 19 regional education centres in northern Saurashtra, Gujarat, and southern India.

Infant and young child feeding programme, Buniyaad, India.

AKDN / Mansi Midha

Improving Infant and Young Child Feeding Practices

AKHS, with World Bank support, is implementing the Maitreya Project. This works to improve knowledge, attitude and practices related to infant and young child feeding. The aim is to ensure that children receive adequate nutrition. The project started in 2010 in seven villages of Maliya Block, Junagadh District, Gujarat.

AKF is piloting an approach to under-nutrition management through government-run ECD centres and their catchment villages. The approach addresses underlying issues and determinants, and integrates training for service providers, community engagement, water, sanitation and hygiene and strengthening caregiver practices. This includes supporting parents and caregivers to ensure improved health and development outcomes for young children and mothers.

In 2014 AKF completed a three-year infant and young child feeding practices programme in rural Bihar, training 500 women who then educated other caregivers. The proportion of mothers who breastfed their newborns within one hour of birth increased from 17 percent to 65 percent, and the proportion of mothers who exclusively breastfed their children for the first six months increased from 15 percent to 50 percent.

Community health meeting, India.


Adolescent Health

The Community Health Awareness and Action Promoted by Young Adults programme aimed to reduce child mortality and improve maternal health in Gujarat from 2005 to 2010. It reached nearly 150,000 women and children. The programme mobilised communities and other stakeholders by forming over 100 health action groups, community health promoters and village health committees.

The impact of these programmes included:

  • full immunisation coverage of children;

  • a substantially greater proportion of births occurring in health facilities;

  • an increase in the number of regular antenatal care visits;

  • better understanding of newborn childcare, breastfeeding and complementary feeding practices amongst mothers;

  • improved community understanding of hygiene and sanitation practices; and

  • higher use of contraceptives amongst married women in the project area.

AKF also provides adolescent health and life-skills education in Bihar, Hyderabad and Uttar Pradesh. Adolescent girls in particular are taught how to cope with the daily challenges they face through modules focused on self-identity and esteem, working with peers, biological and emotional changes, and reproductive and sexual health issues. These efforts contribute to an improvement of their health and well-being, their understanding of legal entitlements, and their knowledge and skills to access formal employment and income-earning activities.

The Prince Aly Khan Hospital in Mumbai, India, was established in 1945 and has since built a reputation for quality care. Its strengths include cardiac surgery, surgical oncology and, since 2008, bone marrow transplant.

AKDN / Jean-Luc Ray

Prince Aly Khan Hospital

Established in 1945, Prince Aly Khan Hospital is a 158-bed multi-specialty acute care hospital in Mumbai. The ISO-certified hospital is best known for its services in oncology and cardiovascular diseases, and renowned as a referral centre regionally and internationally.

The hospital is equipped with an operating complex, oncology department, cardiology department, 24-hour emergency service and a day surgery unit. It has sophisticated intensive care, renal dialysis, neonatal and paediatric units, a centre for gastrointestinal diseases, and a host of other facilities. Outpatient services, including free visits for the poor, are provided.