THE World Vision Tanzania (WVT) trough its Kilimatinde Area Project has embarked on a robust school feeding programme expected to benefit about 5,227 pupils from eight primary school in Manyoni District, Singida Region.
At the weekend, WVT handed over 18,965 kilogrammes of maize, 12,730 kilogrammes of beans, 1,584 kilogrammes of cooking oil and 948 kilogrammes of salt, all of them valued at 42,500 US dollars (about 99 million).
The amount of food will be used by pupils during three months of the implementation of the programme, according to Kilimatinde Area Project Coordinator, Rukia Msuya.
The Kilimatinde AP according to Ms Msuya is the development project at the Kilimatinde area in Manyoni District, Singida Region, which kicked off in 2003 and that the project is expected to phase out in 2024.
Funded by WVT through a funding from the UK, the project is operating in 17 different villages of the Manyoni District in five wards of Solya, Saranda, Makuru, Majiri and Sasajila.
The major objective of the Kilimatinde Area Project is to improve children livelihoods, families and all communities in Kilimatinde by 2024.
Regarding the school feeding programme according to the programme coordinator, WVT decided to chip in to help children get food while at school, following a weather forecast report by the Tanzania Meteorological Agency (TMA) in September 2021, which predicted that there were indications that 13 districts of the Mainland Tanzania including Manyoni District would face hunger.
Following the report, the Prime Minister’s Office Disaster Management Department conducted a survey on food security in those districts, which found out that food security was at danger in the said districts.
According to Ms Msuya, after consultations with the PMO’s WVT decided to come up with the school feeding programme to help feed pupils at eight different primary schools.
The schools in the programme include Solya, Makasuku, Sasajila, Makuru B, Mankembo, Saranda, Chibumagwa and Hika.
The event to hand over food to the said schools was held at Solya Primary School at the end of the week and attended by different government officials and representatives from WVT.
Speaking at the event, Manyoni Acting District Commissioner, Lydia Ntitu, asked the heads of schools and other teachers in the schools covered by the project to make sure that the provided food was neither stolen nor destroyed.
“I wish to pay tribute to WVT for coming up with this important programme because experience shows that many pupils are performing poorly during their final examinations because of hunger at school and at home,” she said.
Ms Ntitu equally directed education officers to ensure that the programme was becoming successful.
WVT Central Crusted Manager, Pundensiana Rwezaula asked parents to collaborate with her organisation to ensure that the programme remains sustainable even after three months of its implementation so that their children can concentrate during class hours.
“In the next three months of the projects we will do monitoring to see if the performance of children at school has so far improved during the implementation of the programme,” said Ms Rwezaula.
Manyoni District acting District Executive Director (DED), Abubakari Kisuda said that by coming up with the vital programme, WVT had showed true friendship in helping the government implement its various development agenda.