It is back to school for the staff of educational institutions in the city.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will teach basics of nutrition and hygiene to teachers, caterers, canteen staff and contractors of schools and colleges. The civic administration will provide an advisory to all school and colleges on how to supply healthy food to students.
“A majority of canteens in schools and colleges supply unhealthy food to children. They mostly supply junk and non-nutritional food. Our aim is to create awareness among the schools and colleges to inculcate healthy eating habits among children,” said Manisha Mhaiskar, additional municipal commissioner.
The week-long workshop starting on Sunday will have officials from the health department give lessons on how to make canteens a source of nutritional and healthy food.
“Even though a majority of schools and colleges emphasis on nutritional food, they rarely implement it. The caterers need to be taught the benefits of healthy eating. The workshop aims at discussing wholesome issues related to healthy food and hygiene,” said Dr Anil Bandiwadekar, executive health officer of the BMC.
The workshop complements the DNA Hygiene for Kitchen campaign, which aims to improve hygiene practices in canteens of educational institutions, hospitals and corporate offices.
The officials said the workshop will also help control proliferating cases of diabetes. “Only a child who has been eating nutritional and healthy food can evolve as a fit adult. The workshop aims at making every child immune to lifestyle diseases,” said Mhaiskar.
After training the staff of schools and colleges, the BMC will have similar workshops for canteen staff at BMC offices.
“Hygiene and healthy food is the essence of a healthy living. After gauging the response and impact of the workshop for schools, we will also talk to food suppliers in the BMC offices about healthy food,” said a senior civic official.
BMC health committee chairperson Rajul Patel said that after the incident of food poisoning at Indian Institute of Technology-Powai, lessons of hygiene and healthy food are inevitable.
“There is no doubt that the young generation needs to know what is beneficial and harmful for their health. It is difficult to check the eating habit of every child. But we can amend the source of their food. We can make a substantial change by improving the quality of food supplied in schools and colleges,” she said.