March 23, 2020. International School Meals Day is a unique campaign to raise awareness of good nutrition for all children, regardless of their circumstances.
“This year’s theme was ‘Sharing our Successes’, which encourages young people to think about their favourite food and nutrition projects they’ve been part of,” said Julika Falconer, head of the Zero2Five Trust.
Worldwide, there is an unprecedented understanding and development of school meal programmes as an economic investment strategy for country governments.
Efficient school feeding programmes serve social protection and development goals by feeding hungry children.
These programmes also foster education and contribute inter-generational benefits to families and can create jobs.
“We have seen that successfully implemented school feeding programmes increase enrolment and attendance, improve learning and social behaviour and most importantly, decrease hunger and malnutrition. Hunger is known to be the greatest barrier to any development and learning,” continued Falconer.
Lamula Primary School have had a long-standing relationship with the Zero2Five Trust, according to principal, Ian Khumalo.
“We have benefited immensely from this relationship. Like last year, a team, led by Julika Falconer, surprised our pupils on International School Meal Day with a bowl of FutureLife porridge, fruit and an energy bar. Many of our pupils don’t have the luxury of decent meals so they enjoyed and welcomed the gesture. Our school community is needy and appreciates such gestures. We are fortunate to have NPOs that make a difference,” he added.
Regular meals at school lift a huge burden off the many food insecure households in South Africa. Much has been done in the past years to boost the National School Nutrition Programme (NSNP) by the Department of Education with private/ public partnerships and the provision of supplementary school meals.
The Zero2Five Trust serves around 250, 000 highly nutritious meals every month at ECD centres and primary schools in KZN and the Eastern Cape.
This year, they partnered with the inspirational sport coaches from PeacePlayers South Africa to host a morning of good food and fun at Lamula Primary School.
The 483 pupils received a Futurelife Oats breakfast, a Futurelife energy bar and a banana from local business, the Juice Kitchen.
This was the eighth ISMD in total worldwide and Zero2Five Trust has participated for the last three years. It was both a great celebration and the chance to bring together children and communities across the world to share their experiences, stories and news.