A mother with her daughter in Baran, Rajasthan, India.


Although food security is improving, the world’s largest democracy still has a lot to do to tackle its high malnutrition levels.

With a rapid rise over the past few years, India is now one of the top five world’s largest economies.

The country is showing continuous improvements with a high life expectancy, literacy rate and health conditions. However, among its 1.3 billion inhabitants the conditions for those living in some regions are comparable to those of some of the world’s poorest countries.

Undernutrition in India is the result of widespread poverty, rapid population growth, pockets of weak governance, poor health systems and unreliable national indicators. These issues are compounded by the social factors of caste, ethnicity, religion and gender.

Country facts

  • 132,110

    Action Against Hunger's programmes reached over 130,000 people in India in 2020.

  • 1.3BN

    India is the world's second-largest country by population.

  • 34.7%

    Almost 35% of children under five in India suffer from malnutrition.

Action Against Hunger’s work in India

Our teams in India have developed numerous projects focusing on nutrition, food security and livelihoods and water, sanitation and hygiene.

We deliver programmes to provide children with therapeutic food and supplements to treat and prevent life-threatening hunger. We’ve also scaled up our nutrition programmes to improve the way we diagnose, treat and prevent malnutrition.

As part of our response to the Covid-19 pandemic, we’ve worked with local government to support the healthcare system and provide emergency food supplies and hygiene kits to vulnerable communities.

Project Vruddhi

In partnership with CARE India, we’re supporting the Government in Gujarat province to improve essential health and nutrition services for communities in Bhavnagar and Sabarkantha.

By improving knowledge, skills and motivation we’re working to achieve accelerated progress towards nutrition goals identified under POSHAN Abhiyan – a nutrition programme launched by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Our programmes include:

  • promoting breastfeeding and handwashing
  • preventing maternal and childhood anaemia
  • treating common childhood illnesses

It’s estimated that over a five-year period, the project will tackle malnutrition by reaching:

  • 22,294 pregnant women
  • 60,093 mothers of children under 3 years old
  • 20,186 children under 3 years old


Learn more about our work in India

Bhumika receives treatment at an Action Against Hunger health centre in India.

Bhumika's story

After visiting one of our malnutrition treatment centres in Baran, northern India, three-year-old Bhumika now has the chance to go on to live a full, happy and productive life.

A strong start
Sunita and Bhumika at home after receiving treatment from Action Against Hunger.

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