In April 2021, we commenced our pilot school feeding program at Chitulikwa community school as part of our education support programmes. Chitulikwa community school is located in a poor neighbourhood of Kabanana East in Lusaka Zambia. The school has over 160 students from the ages of 3 years to 17 years and offers education from Early Years to 9th Grade. Because most of the children come from poor households, most of the students hardly have breakfast before attending school. Apart from providing basic nutrition, the school feeding program is aimed at increasing school attendance especially for girls who are usually made to stay back at home to help with domestic chores or end up in early marriages in a country with high prevalence of child marriages.
Speaking at the launch of the school feeding pilot, Simpact Foundation Executive Director Banja Mkwanazi Kayumba said,’’ It was heartening to see the faces of the children at the launch of our school feeding program pilot at Chitulikwa Community School. We believe that every child deserves a chance to have a basic education and nutrition at their critical growth stage to achieve their full potential.
We are looking forward to rolling out our multi-faceted education programmes to many more community schools so that we can help impact many more vulnerable children. Nearly 60 percent of Zambia’s children live in poor households and some of those live in a neighbourhood like Kabanana. Through our school feeding programme, it costs only about US$1.50 to feed a child breakfast per month, while that may not seem much to many people, to a child coming from a poor household, it makes a big difference.’’
For 8 year old John who is a student at the school he was grateful to have breakfast at school as his parents often struggle to provide breakfast before school. John like most children at the school comes from a poor household in Kabanana where he lives in a three roomed house with five of his siblings and his parents.