Lagos proposes N11b for school feeding

The Lagos State ‘Snacks for Thought’ school feeding initiative for primary school pupils, which will start in September, is estimated to cost N11 billion.

The Special Adviser on Civic Engagement to the Governor, Princess Aderemi Adebowale, made this known when she addressed reporters as part of activities to mark Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s second year in office.

She said the ‘Snacks-for-Thought’ initiative focuses on children’s physical and cognitive development by working to enhance their learning experience, which starts with their mental disposition.

Adebowale said: “It is a state initiative to complement the Home Grown School Feeding Programme of the Federal Government, which covers only pupils in primary 1-3. The ‘Snacks for Thought’ feeding is expected to take care of pupils at the crèche and primary 4 to 6, to ensure that all pupils partake in the school feeding programme when it is eventually adopted by the government.

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“It is also preparedness in preventive security programme that is far more than snacks-giving. It is an investment of the Sanwo-Olu administration in the common future and stability of Lagos State, and an important step in building a thriving 21st century Lagos where citizens are safe, productive and understand their civic rights and responsibilities.”

“This programme also has the tendency to serve as the socio-economic blueprint of the government and, in the long run, help this generation bequeath a sustainable development legacy to the next generation by keeping pupils in school.

“When children stay in school and learn, they take charge of their own learning experience and stand a greater chance of making something out of their lives, while also becoming productive citizens capable of contributing to the development of the state.

“There are additional dimensions to the project other than just giving snacks; there is food and nutritional security, safety and human development. The government is partnering the private sector and we already have over 400 volunteers that will work with us. This is why we are appealing for more Public Private Partnerships (PPP) for effective implementation of the programme.

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“The pilot scheme, held on Lagos Island for one week, covered 33 public primary schools, with 11,965 pupils participating. The exercise is billed to recommence in September.”

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