According to NFHS-3 (2005-06), India houses the highest number of stunted children globally. Almost half of Indian children are stunted with the prevalence being highest among children belonging to scheduled tribes - India’s tribal peoples.

Stunting in tribal children, like that of all other children, is influenced by a multitude of factors including household food insecurity, maternal nutrition, poor feeding and care practices in the first two years of life and poor access to water, health and sanitation services.

In order to start a discourse around what actions need to be taken to accelerate reduction of stunting in tribal children, SC/ST Research and Training Institute Odisha, in collaboration with Departments of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe, Women and Child Development and Health and Family Welfare in Odisha as well as UNICEF Odisha and Ministry of Tribal Affairs is organizing a two-day conclave titled ‘Nourishing India’s tribal children: voices of frontliners, good practices and policy implications’ on 15-16 January 2015 in Mayfair Convention, Bhubaneswar.
The central focus of this conclave is to share “what works and how,” inviting voices of frontliners, practitioners and government officials in eight states (Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha and Rajasthan). It emphasizes how various government departments in these states can coordinate, contribute and collaborate for reducing stunting in India’s tribal children.
 
Conclave Objectives:

Collectively identify gaps and good practices, and chart a road map for improving access to food, nutrition, and health and sanitation services for children in tribal pockets.
Solidify all stakeholders’ commitment toward tribal children’s development.

Participating States: Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha and Rajasthan.
 
Representatives from: State and district SC/ST Department officials, Tribal Research Institutes; field practitioners; Commissioners of State Departments of Women and Child Development, Health and Family Welfare, Drinking Water and Sanitation; and national representation from Ministries of Tribal Affairs, Health and Family Welfare, Rural Development and Women and Child Development.
 
Format: Six thematic sessions facilitated with open space technology: 1. Food and livelihood security; 2. Reach of Integrated Child Development Services; 3. Outreach and referral of health services; 4. Water and sanitation services; 5. Tribal budgets and plans; and 6. Role of development agencies. Each thematic session will be facilitated by a technical expert in the subject area.
 
Entry: by invitation only