Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme


Launched on 2nd October 1975, today, ICDS Scheme represents one of the world’s largest and most unique programme for early childhood development. ICDS is the foremost symbol of India’s commitment to her children – India’s response to the challenge of providing pre-school education on one hand and breaking the vicious cycle of malnutrition, morbidity, reduced learning capacity and mortality, on the other.


The Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme was launched in 1975 with the following objectives:

  1. To improve the nutritional and health status of children in the age-group 0-6 years;
  2. To lay the foundation for proper psychological, physical and social development of the child;
  3. To reduce the incidence of mortality, morbidity, malnutrition and school dropout;
  4. To achieve effective co-ordination of policy and implementation amongst the various departments to promote child development; and
  5. To enhance the capability of the mother to look after the normal health and nutritional needs of the child through proper nutrition and health education.


The above objectives are sought to be achieved through a package of services comprising:

  1. Supplementary nutrition,
  2. Immunization,
  3. Health check-up,
  4. Referral services,
  5. Pre-school non-formal education and
  6. Nutrition & health education.

The concept of providing a package of services is based primarily on the consideration that the overall impact will be much larger if the different services develop in an integrated manner as the efficacy of a particular service depends upon the support it receives from related services.

Service Delivery Pattern :

State Level:

Secretariat at Department of WCD and Social Welfare (Policy), Directorate of Social Welfare (Implementation)

District Level:

District Magistrate through the Office of the District Programme Officer (ICDS) (Monitoring)

Project Level:

Office of the Child Development Project Officer (CDPO), Supervisor

Anganwadi Centre Level:

Anganwadi Centre under an Anganwadi Worker assisted by a Helper