President Bio’s School Feeding Program In Top Gear
By Finda Judith Ngaujah:
Strategic Communications Unit,
Ministry of Information and Communications
It could be recalled that in 2018, the New Direction Government of His Excellency President Julius Maada Bio introduced the School Feeding Programme across the country for the first time.
In that regard, a whopping 69 billion Leones was allocated for the 2018/2019 academic year.
With the Free Quality Education being President Bio's flagship program, the Ministry of Basic and Senior Secondary Education (MBSSE) has been working tirelessly to ensure that the targeted districts/chiefdoms benefit fully from the landmark intervention.
Early last week, the National School Feeding Program started dry ration distribution to Grade Six pupils in both the Western Urban and Western Rural districts.
According to Sorie Ibrahim Fofanah, the Director of School Feeding, Ministry of Basic and Senior Secondary Education, the project seeks to actualize the directive of the Honorable Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education, Dr. David M. Sengeh, that all Grade Six pupils nationwide must be fed adequately in order to ensure that they remain active in their school work and also to motivate them to stay home after school and focus energy on their studies.
Seven districts have been selected for the feeding program. The beneficiary districts/chiefdoms were targeted based on the food insecurity and vulnerability analysis that was done in 2015 as well as data collected from the 2018/2019 school census.
Meanwhile, the school feeding program is ongoing in 62 schools in Pujehun district and 77 schools in Kambia district.
The Director of School Feeding Programme, Sorie Ibrahim Fofanah, disclosed in an exclusive interview that the National School Feeding Policy and the Plan of Action have been drafted with plans underway to start purchasing locally produced foodstuffs for distribution to the targeted districts/chiefdoms to implement the school feeding program.
A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between the Ministry of Basic and Senior Secondary Education and its partners (WFP, JAM, CARITAS & CRS) to aid the work of the ministry in ensuring that the free quality education remains a success.
The School Feeding Program is a clear indication of President Bio’s undiminished determination to transform Sierra Leone through education, making citizens self-reliant and progressively moving the country forward.
Education has unceasingly been a major transformative tool for socio-economic and political development of every state; therefore investing in it is a massive profit that can always be of benefit to the existing generation and even generations yet unborn.
It can also lay the foundation for leaders to build on and take the country to higher height of sustainable development.