377,000 children benefit from school feeding programme
The school feeding programme has quadrupled reaching over 377,000 learners in 1,400 schools in all 14 regions of the country from 78,000 in 1996, a government official said last week.
The programme which been in existence for 21 years, initially managed by the World Food Programme (WFP) in 1991, was fully taken over by thegovernment in 1996, said the Executive Director of the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture, Sanet Steenkamp, at the launch of the country’s first School Feeding Programme Policy on Friday in Otjumuise.
The programme currently supports pre-primary and primary school learners across the country with a mid-morning meal comprised of a fortified maize meal blend, she added.
The Deputy Minister of Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture, Anna Nghipondoka at the event said her ministry has made tremendous progress in scaling up school feeding in Namibia over the years.
According to Nghipondoka the policy which they launched aims to provide quality access to all children, quality learning and education for all children in Namibia.
“The policy reaffirms the government’s commitment to ensure good governance, transparency, efficiency, accountability and meaningful participation and involvement by all stakeholders,” she added.
UN’s WFP Country Representative and Director Elvis Odeke at the launch said the school feeding policy will aid in strengthening the implementation of the Namibian School Feeding Programme, which is one of the vehicles that contribute towards the achievement of the ‘vision of education for all’.