One year on: How the School Feeding Programme has changed the face of public education in Kaduna State
Statistics from the Federal Ministry of Health shows that 37% of children in Nigeria were malnourished and so are 54% of Children in the North-West. These alarming statistics were some of the reasons the State Government embarked on this project. Quality education and high rate of enrollment are vital indices in the development of Kaduna state.
Two major factors that hampered the growth of public education in Kaduna state where there is an estimated 4, 340 public school students. This led the Kaduna state government to initiate the public school feeding programme for two major reasons:
- Poverty amongst most parents in the state.
- High rate of malnutrition amongst students in public schools.
The Kaduna School Feeding Programme ran for 8 months starting from Febuary, 2016. During this period, the programme led to an increase in the e public school pupils from 1.1 million to 2.1 million, a 100% increase. It also generated 17, 000 direct jobs food vendors, mostly women in Kaduna state.
Several stakeholders in Kaduna state have commended the school feeding programme, the impact it had and the need for its continuity. We spoke with a few people on the streets of Kaduna on their take on the programme.
It is evident that the School Feeding Programme, while it lasted, had a great impact on the educational system in Kaduna state. Unfortunately, it ran for only 8 months. With the impact and the call from vital stakeholders, the programme will be relaunched to achieve even bigger goals in the state.