PMC plans a separate budget for child-friendly initiatives
The global Urban95 initiative takes steps to ensure that kids in cities are not stunted due to environmental or health factors and that the city is friendly for kids even between the age of 0 and 3 years, and up to 95 cm in heightUpdated: Dec 10, 2019 16:27 IST
Pune: The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) plans to bring in a separate budget head for children-friendly initiatives. The civic officials from health, environment and building planning departments recently visited a conference on Urban95 initiative in Netherlands wherein ideas to make cities friendly for children were discussed.
The global Urban95 initiative takes steps to ensure that kids in cities are not stunted due to environmental or health factors and that the city is friendly for kids even between the age of 0 and 3 years, and up to 95 cm in height.
Dr Ramchandra Hankare, chief of PMC health department and part of the panel that took park in the conference, said, “A child’s brain develops up to 95% till the age of three and so we as a civic body must ensure that his physical and mental development is not hampered due to the city’s development. Policies by the health and environment departments can directly affect a child’s growth. Similarly, the building planning department too can help in a child’s proper growth by chalking the city development plan in a child-friendly manner.”
The conference discussed way as to how the health department can provide proper nutrition to underprivileged kids and for the environment department to ensure that safe air and water is provided to kids.
Shivaji Lanke, head of PMC building planning department, said, “We already have the concept of place-making wherein plots smaller than one acre which cannot be developed as gardens are developed to be more child-friendly. We also have schools designed in a certain ways and wall paintings to make them suitable for kids.”
Hankare said the civic administration will take steps to implement the ideas discussed at the conference in Netherlands.
“We will suggest a separate budget head in the upcoming budget to ensure that the ideas are implemented. We will not require a huge budget, but only that the future developments should be planned keeping in mind the future generation.”
The civic official said that all stakeholders, including hospitals, NGOs, doctors and engineers will be roped in to take the initiative forward.
The conference, Urban 95, was conducted in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Three cities, including Pune, Bhubaneshwar and Jaipur were selected from India to attend the global meet. Representatives from over 20 countries, including from Africa, Turkey and Brazil participated to discuss and exchange ideas to make cities more child-friendly. The conference was organised from December 2 to December 6.