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Govt, WFP set to introduce national school feeding programme  


World Food Programme (WFP) country representative, Eddie Rowe last week announced that his organization will provide technical support to government in building its capacity in managing and implementing the national school feeding programme.

The proposed feeding programme follows poor weather conditions which prevailed during the 2014-15 agricultural season which included erratic rainfall and long dry spells that contributed to large scale crop failure across the country.

The program is meant to improve the education sector as a whole and is set to benefit over 3 million school going children.

WFP country representative, Eddie Rowe said, the programme is meant to address hunger problems in the country.

“The objective of this program in Zimbabwe is slightly different, the main objective of the  programme around the world is to encourage enrollment and retention but in Zimbabwe where retention is over 90%, the objective is to end short term hunger.

“Such a programme is meant to provide school children with  the nutrients and energy needed to focus in class” explains WFP country representative.

“The concept is meant to be debated by the cabinet and once it sails through cabinet we will work with the ministry of Education to establish it,” he said.

The program is meant to commence next year in October after policy formulation.

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Globally school meals promote access to education, improve the nutritional status and health of children, and help break the cycle of hunger and poverty afflicting poor areas.

Mr Rowe, also said that school meals will boost local agricultural production and help the economy.

“We are working with farmers so that they expand. Farmers will grow the crops and we will procure those crops,” said Mr Rowe.

Zimbabwe’s school meals will be implemented in all public primary and secondary schools across the country.

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Journalist based in Harare

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