Sep 13, 2012, 9:55 AM
The World Food Programme (WFP) recently inaugurated the Lower River Regional Multi-Sectoral Committee for school-feeding programme at the Regional Education office in Mansakonko.
The committee was expected to direct the implementation of the idea to establish a nationally-owned home-grown feeding programme for schools by the year 2020.
The programme was intended to replace the full package feeding programmes in schools in the country by the World Food Programme (WFP), which existed for more than forty years.
This move, according to Marie Njie-Adams, WFP Capacity Development Officer, had been triggered by increasing challenges in sourcing funding opportunities for school feeding.
She said one of the strategies used in the transition towards a nationally-owned school feeding is the provision of capacity development support by WFP to the school-feeding units of the Regional Education Directorates to support the strengthening of capacity, system and processes for an effective and efficient school-feeding programme.
A second strategy is the introduction of a Home-Grown School Feeding approach which entails supporting agricultural development through linking small-holder farmers with the school-feeding programme by creating a steady market for local producers to feed the School-Feeding Programme.
She said the multi-sectoral committee task was to provide guidance to the implementation of the capacity development project as an important structure within the framework.
She disclosed that other multi-sectoral committees in the North Bank, Central River, Upper River and the West Coast Regions were already launched.The regional Education Director for Region 4, Musa Susso, disclosed that his region is among the pilot choices on the strategy to introduce Home-Grown School Feeding approach through which schools and communities are encouraged to farm after which their proceeds would be purchased by the ministry through the WFP funds