In Peru, "6.5 million (25 percent) [of the] people are classified as being extremely poor because they live on less than $1 per day,” according to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP). WFP runs programs in the country to help those suffering in poverty.
Earlier this decade, WFP ran school feeding programs to help combat child hunger. Today, the government of Peru has taken over school feeding. Wherever WFP works, the goal is for the host government to become self-sufficient and be able to provide school meals for all children.
In the following interview Guy Gauvreau, WFP country director for Peru, shares his thoughts on school feeding.
How many children are benefiting from the WFP school feeding programs within the country?
WFP Peru successfully handed over the school feeding program to the Government of Peru in 2003. The government is entirely responsible for the financing, management and implementation of the program, which benefits all 3.5 million children at school.
Discuss what effect the meals have on the children in terms of school attendance, performance and nutrition
In addition to well-documented impacts such as ''keeping'' the children at school and helping them successfully complete the school year, the school feeding program gives children the opportunity to learn about nutrition and hygiene. The program also reinforces important social issues through the Parent-Teachers Association.
Anything else you'd like to add about why you think school feeding is important for people to support?
After having managed school feeding programs around the world for years, I am convinced that school feeding programs are one of the best programs to benefit children.
People do not realize that most children in the poorest countries are not able to eat a decent breakfast at home. For many, the school feeding meal represents the most important and nutritionally balanced meal of the day.
World Food Programme PSA – The Inheritance of Hunger (narrated by Rachel Weisz)