‘Happiness kits’ to be gifted to students as schools reopen in Odisha
With schools in Odisha likely to reopen this month, given the improvement in the COVID-19 situation, the state government has decided to gift students 'Happiness kits' -- comprising peanuts, jaggery, chickpeas among other items -- to boost their immunity.
The distribution, set to begin during the first week of February, would cover five districts in the initial phase -- Khurda, Cuttack, Puri, Nayagarh, and Sundargarh, an official said on Monday.
"Each kit would contain nutritious food items, such as wheat, turmeric powder, peanuts, jaggery, chickpeas, cinnamon, cardamom, biscuits. These apart, stationery items, including pen, pencil, notepad, sanitary napkin, toothpaste, iodised salt and soap, would also be a part of the kit," he said.
According to School and Mass Education Minister SR Dash, at least 1.83 lakh children of 1,916 schools, spread over the five districts, will benefit from the initiative in the first phase.
The programme would later be extended to other districts of the state, he said.
"In all, 30 lakh children of 60,000 schools would be able to avail the kit," the minister added.
Official sources said the state government has approved a proposal to assign the kit distribution job to Akshaya Patra Foundation, which supplies mid-day meals to schools.