First Lady intensifies school feeding programme

By ZBC Reporter
ZIMBABWE is intensifying its social protection systems, with the First Lady, Amai Auxilia Mnangagwa rolling out a school feeding programme to improve nutrition, school retention and performance among school children.
12-year-old Sharon Ndlovu, a grade seven pupil at Mapili Primary School in Beitbridge joins other pupils for lunch, a routine that has become the most enjoyable part of their school day.
But on this day, lunch was different as the pupils had an opportunity to interact with the First Lady, Amai Auxilia Mnangagwa who visited their school this Wednesday to roll out a schools support feeding programme to complement a government initiative launched in 2016.
The programme rolled out through the Angel of Hope Foundation builds on the government and regional thrust that promotes nutrition among school children as well as fight hunger within the education sector.
During a visit to Mapili Primary school, the First Lady reiterated calls for enhanced support towards the schools feeding programme.
For these children, such programmes have been important in boosting their attendance and performance in school.
Amid reports of malnutrition and stunted growth among children – a result of the disastrous mix of extreme temperatures and low rainfall, the First Lady’s support of the government’s schools feeding programmes is set to augment strides made so far in meeting Sustainable Development Goal number for on the provision of education.
The First Lady’s initiative was also rolled out in Gwanda where a consignment of nutritional commodities was handed to the school authorities to support the already running programme.
Reports highlight several strong outcomes of school feeding including increased attendance and enrolment at school, reduced repetition and dropout rates, improved retention, cognitive performance and completion and promotion rates.