Helen Blakesley of CRS says the program is feeding more than 75,000 children at primary and secondary schools in the Mopti and Koulikoro areas.
Kristina Brayman, who runs the CRS school feeding in Mali says, "It means children receive a hot, nutritious meal each day, using US donated food complemented by both local foods from school gardens and purchased through funds collected by the community. Without that food, many students would not eat a square meal at all. It motivates parents to send their children to school, especially girls, and means the children are able to grow, develop, and maximize their learning potential. It really is essential."
The McGovern-Dole program will have its future funding decided in the US Congress soon. The program in Mali is an example of what a difference this humanitarian aid can make.
As the conflict and hunger persist in Mali the international community will need to support aid agencies.
Food from the US and other donors will be crucial for Mali during the conflict and reconstruction. (Helen Blakesley/CRS)