The pleasant afternoon of February 22, 2019 marked the grand occasion of the dedication to the nation Sai Sure, multi nutrient supplement programme for toddler, children, adolescents, pregnant and lactating mothers offered totally free of cost.
Being run in collaboration with the Divine Mother & Child Health Programme and Annapoorna Breakfast Seva Programme, the launch of Sai Sure saw a huge gathering of eminent personalities who have played significant roles in carrying forward the mission of Swami in the fields of women’s and children’s health.
The event began with the soulful rendering of bhajans and upon the arrival of Bhagawan and the dignitaries for the day, the Divine ambience was enhanced by a ceremonious lighting of the lamp, followed by the befitting chant of the Anna Brahma Suktam by the second-year students of the Pre-University College.
Many dignitaries from the Karnataka region, had graced the occasion and each was welcomed and honored in gratitude for their support in this unique endeavor. We had with us: Sri N H Shivashankar Reddy, Hon’ble Agriculture Minister, Government of Karnataka; Sri T B Jayachandra, Former Minister, Government of Karnataka; Sri V Muniyappa, Political Secretary to Hon’ble Chief Minister and MLA from Sidlaghatta Taluk; Sri H P Manjunath, Zilla Panchayat Chairman, Chikkaballapur District and Sri Anirudh Sravan, Deputy Commissioner, Chikkaballapur District.
According to the 2018 Global Nutrition Report, 45% of the under-5 mortality is because of malnutrition. India also houses about 50% of the under-nourished children of the world. It is said that the health of a child is the true health of the nation and today’s launch of Sai Sure, the brainchild of a group of scientists, was a step towards restoring the health of India’s children.
The introductory address for the occasion was delivered by Sri B.N. Narasimha Murthy, who summarised the work being carried out in the fields of health and education with the blessings of Bhagawan, where nearly 7500 children have received free surgical treatment and more than 5000 children have received free moral-based education. In addition to this, he noted that the government schools in the area are also being benefitted by the Annapoorna Breakfast Seva Programme.
While Bhagawan’s health care initiatives offer curative measures, Sai Sure was envisioned with the objective of primarily preventing medical complications arising from nutritional deficiencies, rather than curing health defects. This preemptive critical corrective measure was initiated by the vast experience gained by screening more than 23,000 expecting mothers and fulfilling their health requirements in rural India. This was possible through associations with various dedicated partners. Each of them was honored and their selfless efforts, duly recognized.
Bangalore society of Obstetrics and Gynecology runs Navachetana (for adolescent education and awareness) and Shramadana (for underprivileged women) programs. Along with the Divine Mother and Child Health Program (DMCHP), they have worked towards health awareness among adolescent girls and offered specialist obstetric clinical services to expecting mothers (ante natal services) in rural Karnataka.
This was followed by the launch of the book entitled, “Compassion – The heart of nursing: A guide for nursing in the Sri Sathya Sai Baba medical institutions”. Written by Helen Martino-Bailey, a registered nurse from Australia who has trained nurses and medical staff for over 30 years, this book is said to be a benchmark for caregivers in medical institutions.
The Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences was also honored for providing 350 medical interns to work in collaboration with DMHCP in rural areas where over 20,000 children were screened for medical illnesses and offered curative remedies.
Sri Jayadeva Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences & Research is also playing a significant role in Bhagawan’s ongoing mission of healthcare, through the launch of the “Sai Jayadeva Shishu Hrudaya Samrakshana Yojana”, for treating children with Heart anomalies.
GrowAyu Technologies Pvt. Ltd. offers comprehensive healthcare solutions to manage databases and the support of this company was recognised and honoured in gratitude for their service.
This was then followed by the launch of “HD Steth”, which is the world’s first Intelligent Stethoscope with integrated EKG leads. Sri Arvind Thiagarajan, Founder and CEO of HD Medical Inc. and Inventor of HD Steth was honored by the dignitaries for his contributions in advancing technology in child heart care.
Dr. Ravishankar, District Health Officer of Chikkaballapur, was honored for the continued support of the Government and its Health Department in all the endeavors.
The next address was by Dr. Satish Babu, Consultant Endocrinologist, BGS Global Hospitals who is also spearheading the Sai Sure initiative. He began by highlighting the saddening statistics of malnutrition in the country with 97 million children being underweight and 51% of adolescent girls being anaemic. Despite government initiatives like Poshan Abhiyan and Ksheera Bhagya, there is a wide gap to be bridged. While the challenge of hunger is being addressed through Annapoorna, the requirement of micronutrients in the diet needs an initiative like Sai Sure. Sai Sure compliments the government nutritional programs and proves to be all the more effective due to its Ease of Use, Scalability and more importantly the composition being Scientific.
This was followed by a video presentation about Sai Sure, which highlighted the main variants: Sai Sure for Children – completed successful pilot in Chikkaballapur, ready for implementation in other districts in Karnataka; Sai Sure for Pregnant Women – ready for pilot in select districts and Sai Sure for Toddlers – ready for implementation across India.
Thereafter, samples of Sai Sure were distributed to pregnant women and rural school children.
Sri T B Jayachandra addressed the gathering next and stated that malnutrition is the biggest enemy of the nation and with Bhagawan as the Commander-in-Chief, we must all join the army to combat this enemy.
Next, Sri V Muniyappa spoke of the importance of collaboration between government and individuals in ensuring success of the nation and the need for commitment towards any task in hand.
This was followed by an address by Sri N H Shivashankar Reddy who lauded the work of Sathya Sai Institutions in the fields of health and education and he guaranteed the support of the government in all the initiatives which benefit the people of the state.
The next speaker, Sri C Sreenivas began his address by quoting Bhagawan’s words calling for combined efforts of government, society, individuals and God in making a better society. He highlighted that health today is a combination of prevention, promotion, education and curation. Every mother and child is Divine and deserves the best of such health. He concluded by noting that “Much has been done but much more is yet to be done” in achieving that goal.
Bhagawan then granted His Divine message, which began with the lines “Janani Janmabhoomischa Swargadapi Gareeyasi” (Mother and mother land are greater than heaven). Bhagawan reminded everyone that the motherland is there because of the mother and it is therefore our biggest responsibility to take care of mothers’ health. He spoke of the great misfortune of poverty and unavailability of healthcare during pregnancy. This can be addressed through Sai Sure in all its variants, which ensures the wellbeing right from conception until the time the individual grows to be a contributing citizen.
Another challenge of lack of sufficient doctors in PHCs was addressed by the hundreds of interns and specialist doctors joining Divine Mother & Child Health program in serving in the rural areas, several of whom were present amongst the audience. Bhagawan called the event a true meeting of the Gods as the Vedas equates only mothers, teachers and doctors to God. He called for each individual to be a good citizen and answer with diligence when our nation calls for us. He also assured the government of a successful and speedy completion of the projects in return for their support.
Bhagawan concluded His Divine message and thereafter, the National Anthem was rendered by the Sai’s Angels Brass Band, after which Prasadam was distributed to everyone.