BANJUL – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and the French Embassy in The Gambia congratulate the Government of The Gambia for joining the Global School Meals Coalition following the signing of the Declaration of Commitment by H.E the President, Mr. Adama Barrow.
In order to ensure that every child has the opportunity to grow, learn and thrive, a group of member states is forming an international Schools Meals Coalition. The coalition’s goal is to strengthen and expand school feeding programs across the globe to make nutritious meals available for all children by 2030.
“I commend the high-level commitment of the Government of The Gambia to this strategic alliance of solidarity and cooperation to support every child with school meals. Our President, Emmanuel Macron has expressed France’s firm support for the coalition and France is mobilizing the international community for this school feeding programme,” said Jean-Charles Allard; Chargé d’affaires, French Embassy in Banjul.
The Government of The Gambia and WFP have been collaborating on school feeding programmes since 1970. Taking over the programme, the Government has started including it in its national budget and is independently implementing it in two of the six regions of the country, while WFP supports the other four regions.
“We look forward to supporting the Government of The Gambia through the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education to reach those children who have missed school meals during the COVID-19 pandemic, first, and then expand the programme to all school going children by 2030. We commend the Government for its strong commitment to the home-grown school feeding programme that will also strengthen the local economy and the entire food value chain,” said Yasuhiro Tsumura, WFP Representative and Country Director in The Gambia.
The School Meals: Nutrition, Health and Education for Every Child coalition will officially launch at the United Nations Food Systems Summit in September. It is led by UN member states and spearheaded by France and Finland, with support from WFP.