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Government to continue funding home grown school feeding programme

By Standard Reporter | November 30th 2015

NAIROBI, KENYA: The government will continue to fund the Home Grown School Feeding programme and has started expanding to schools in arid regions the Director General, Ministry of Education Science and Technology, Mrs Leah Rotich has said.  

Speaking while closing the National Learning Event on Procurement Governance for Home Grown School Feeding, Mrs Rotich reiterated that feeding is critical to the children’s education as well as providing market for smallholder farmers.   

In this financial year, the government allocated Sh850M for the school meals programme.  

The MOEST has a long partnership with World Food Programme (WFP) since the inception of the in-kind feeding programme in 1980. WFP continues to provide technical support to MOEST in the implementation of the cash transfer feeding programme that has gradually been replacing the in-kind one. Others are ministries of Agriculture and Health, SNV and PCD. 

Working under the guidance of MOEST, these partners and government ministries have been reviewing the school meals implementation guidelines to strengthen smallholder farmers’ participation, improve accountability and value for money as well as align the programme implementation and management to the system of national and devolved government. These guidelines will be released next year.  

The learning event hosted by SNV drew 50 participants including brought together these partners, Department of Foreign Affairs Trade and Development and other local organisations. The event sought to share these on- going revisions, pilot initiatives that have contributed to these revisions and get feedback towards completion of the guidelines.    

Meanwhile it emerged that training of schools on implementation of school meals guideline is critical for the success of the feeding programme once the guidelines are completed. Mrs. Rotich urged actors in the sector to be instrumental in the capacity building of schools.  

“SNV will also develop a smallholder supplier manual which will draw part of its content  from the Home Grown School Feeding guidelines, train farmer organization and share the supplier guideline with them,” explained Leah Njeri, the Country Coordinator, Procurement Governance in HGSF. 

“In regions where SNV is working they have smallholder farmers and worked with MOEST who have trained schools in these regions and others where partners are working we see results. For instance in SNV regions smallholder farmers have supplied food worth KES 51Million to schools,” said Njeri.

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