Ministry of Education, Guyana

Monday, 23 October 2017 09:15

School feeding programme to be strengthened

news 20171023 2Guyana’s school feeding programme will soon be strengthened after a visit to Victoria Brazil headed by the First Lady H.E Sandra Granger between October 8-10 last.

The visit was a fact-finding mission to the soccer nation to observe the workings of that country’s sustainable school feeding programme.
At a press conference hosted at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) office in Brickdam the findings of the mission were ventilated.
The first lady was accompanied by Minister of Education, Hon Nicolette Henry MP; Minister of Social Protection, Hon Amna Ally MP; Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Guyana representatives and a number of other local organization officials.
According to the first lady, Brazil boasts one of the best school feeding programmes internationally and that was the rational for the visit to the neighboring South American nation.
Further H.E said that there are a number of similarities between the two countries, including soil type and climatic conditions. Mrs. Granger said that Guyana can learn from its neighbour in its quest to strengthen its own feeding programme.
She said that school feeding has been mandatory in primary and secondary schools in Brazil since 1995. In 2009 the country adopted a new policy to establish a 30 percent quota of producing organic agricultural products from local farmers.
It is this approach that the first lady finds most attractive, and laud the multi-dimensional benefits that are derive from the programme. She said the approach taken by Brazilian officials allows for greater involvement by a number of stakeholders.
Additionally, Her Excellency said that the programme ensures access to fresh food, good nutrition, good health and fosters good education. On that visit Mrs. Granger said she observed that there were diverse menus tailored for the nutritional needs of children with special health conditions.
Moreover, she observed that the school feeding programme there is not government centered but it’s a collaborative effort between the communities, teachers, parents, cooks, students and the farmers.
In proffering remarks at the press conference, Minister of Education Nicolette Henry said that the visit provided valuable information that will aid the development of Guyana’s school feeding programme.
Minister Henry said that the findings of the visit will be carefully studied and where applicable, those aspects of the Brazil programme that is applicable to Guyana will be introduced. She said that so long as the necessary funding is available and the policies are in place her ministry will roll out aspects of the Brazil programme soon.
However, she explained that not all aspects of the Brazil programme will be introduced since some might not be applicable; while another issue might be the finances to fund some aspects.
Minister Henry said that it is important that decisions are made with statistics at the heart of the endeavor since it allows for making more inform choices and decisions.

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