JIS News

A total of 7,200 students from 45 educational institutions in East Central St. James are to benefit from a breakfast programme being implemented by Member of Parliament for the area, Edmund Bartlett, with assistance from Food for the Poor.
The East Central St. James Nutrition Programme, which targets early childhood level students from approximately 75 communities, will get underway on Monday, November 8 and will see students receiving a bowl of cereal with milk every morning.
Mr. Bartlett told JIS News, that the main objective of the initiative was to provide every child with adequate nutrition to enhance learning.
“The value of such a programme is inestimable in real terms, because what it does, in addition to providing the critical protein base that the child needs for the development of the brain, is that it aids in ensuring that there is full attendance at school and that there is no real reason for the child not to be there, certainly not on the grounds of lack of nutritional support,” Mr. Bartlett said.
“The parents would then be relieved . particularly those who are economically challenged. When children are hungry or have been ill-fed, they can’t stay up and study and listen for any long period of time and worst of all, they can’t absorb knowledge at the rate that they should “, he stressed.
He told JIS News, that special arrangements have been made with the Florida office of Food for the Poor for the supply of food items to ensure the sustainability of the programme.
“About a week after Hurricane Ivan, I met with Robin Mahfood (from Food for the Poor) and discussed possibilities for assistance and in fact, he was very strong on the nutrition programme. The level of commitment I know he has to it will enable that programme to go on for a long, time”, Mr. Bartlett noted.
He said that the food supplies were presently being collected for storage and a system would be put in place where teachers from the respective schools would, by the use of vouchers, be able to draw from the centralized storing area, the quantities that would be assigned to each school.

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