The charity World Vision is helping to build peace in the African nation of Burundi. World Vision's work includes fighting child hunger and bolstering education through school feeding. James Jones, Program Management Officer for World Vision's Integrated Nutrition and Food Team, talks about how vital Food for Education is for children.
The Integrated School Feeding Initiative to Enhance Primary Education in Burundi is funded by the World Food Program and is carried out by World Vision, Burundi in coordination with World Vision, Korea.
The program is operated out of 123 primary schools in the Karusi and Cankuzo provinces. The 12-month project is worth a total of $5,332,370. Of that amount, $4,638,930 represents the cost of some 4,951 metric tons of food commodities. In addition, $693,440 in cash covers complementary activities like the distribution of school supplies, agricultural inputs, clothes, medical equipment, and hygiene supplies, as well as staff and administrative costs.
World Vision is scheduled to complete the current phase of the project in September, 2009.
How many children are benefiting from the World Vision school feeding program in Burundi?
World Vision had planned to reach 97,030 children through the program. But as of March 2009, the program is actually reaching 102,974 students.
Discuss what effect the meals have on the children in terms of school attendance, performance, and nutrition.
Though the Government of Burundi declared free and mandatory primary education for all students in 2005, many Burundian children do not complete primary school. “Food insecurity” is one of the leading factors keeping children from school.
Only 16 percent of Burundi’s population is estimated to have enough nutritious food –- and structures in place to ensure that they continue to have enough, even during difficult times. As a result, even small family hardships can cause parents to pull their children from school, partially so they can use funds set aside for school fees to purchase food, and partially so that their children can work to provide additional income for the family.