The federal government says the home grown school feeding programme will commence on May 14.
The programme seeks to provide food for beneficiaries of school feeding programme while they stay at home.
While imposing a lockdown on Lagos, Ogun and Abuja on March 29, President Muhammadu Buhari had directed the ministry of humanitarian affairs, disaster management and social development, to liaise with state governments and develop strategies for the continuation of the school feeding programme.
In a statement on Monday, the ministry said the programme will commence in Abuja followed by Lagos and Ogun before it is implemented in the other states of the federation.
It said the target beneficiaries as children in primary 1 to 3 in public schools participating in the programme.
“The Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development will commence the Home-Grown School Feeding Programme on Thursday May 14, 2020 in Abuja and subsequently in Lagos and Ogun states before the other states of the federation,” the statement read.
“The Ministry in consultation and collaboration with state governments identified the distribution of Take-Home Rations (THR) to the households of the children on the programme as a feasible method of achieving this directive after exploring several options. This is a globally accepted means of supporting children to continue to have access to nutrient rich foods despite disruptions to the traditional channels of school feeding.
“The Ministry has requested states to carry out mapping exercises in order to trace the households of the children using all available data sources including the School Based Management Boards, community focal persons, cooks on the programme and most importantly existing school registers in the LGAs where the schools are domiciled, which is the primary source of data of beneficiaries used by the National Home Grown School Feeding Programme.”
The ministry said each household will receive uncooked food items that have been assessed and approved by nutrition experts as adequate for the children.
It further disclosed that 6,000 schools will serve as distribution centers for clusters of communities “except in some states with unique security and safety issues where other structures will be used.”
“The Ministry is receiving Technical Support from the World Food Programme (WFP). Following on the technical partnership with the WFP, a joint document on “Safe Distributions during COVID” has been developed and will be shared with the State Governments before implementation,” it read.
“Each household will receive a Take-Home Ration valued at N4,200 and made up of 5 kg Bag of Rice, 5 kg Bag of Beans, 500 ml Vegetable Oil, 750 ml Palm Oil, 500 mg Salt, 15 pcs of eggs, 140gm Tomato Paste. These rations have been reviewed by nutrition experts to ascertain the nutritional value and benefit to the children.
“As an extra layer of monitoring the Ministry has requested other agencies of government including the DSS, EFCC, ICPC, Code of Conduct Bureau and a host of NGOs and CSOs to help monitor. The Ministry’s hotlines will be made available to the public to provide accurate information and for grievance redress.”
The ministry urged Nigerians to support the poor and less privileged, adding that the federal government’s resources are insufficient to cater for all.