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Jun 3, 2021

Schools Feeding Project to Be Expanded Countrywide

Today at the Mexican Embassy in Belmopan, Belize received a report on the Meso-America Hunger Free School Feeding project in the South. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the Mexican Agency for International Development Cooperation completed the pilot project where several schools in Toledo were introduced to gardening – where they plant and produce the foods they eat in their feeding programmes. It is now expected that the project will be expanded to primary schools across the country. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.


Duane Moody, Reporting

Subsistence farming has been taken to the schools. A pilot hunger-free project in the south has been completed and the success revealed today during a handing over ceremony. The report of the Meso-America Hunger Free School Feeding Project, when implemented in primary schools across the country, will see that our children never go hungry.


Rossana Briceño

Rossana Briceño, Special Envoy for Women and Families

“This is a significant contribution towards achieving the Belize we want. I have witnessed first-hand the harmful and lasting consequences, food insecurity and malnutrition has on our children. And I can tell you that a guaranteed meal a day is often the reason our children go to school in the first place. It is also the reason they come back and will come back when schools reopen in September.”


A sustainable feeding programme and school gardens helps those who are most vulnerable. To ensure its success, there must be collaboration between various ministries.  In attendance today were a number of parliamentarians, including the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House. As the speakers took to the podium, they shared the government’s commitment to the eradication of hunger, particularly in schools.


Francis Fonseca

Francis Fonseca, Minister of Education

“The Ministry of Education is fully committed to ensuring that we develop and implement a national sustainable healthy start feeding programme. We appreciate greatly the support that we received as a ministry and a government from AMEXCID and FAO. We fully support the work of the Belize Parliamentary Alliance against Hunger and Malnutrition.”


Jose Mai

Jose Mai, Minister of Agriculture, Food Security & Enterprise

“Important component of this school feeding programme, or sustainable schools are referred to, has to be that students must be involved in gardening, they must be involved in producing their food and that is very important. So yes, different ministries have different roles to play.”


Providing the funding and technical support for the project was F.A.O. and AMEXCID.


Martha Zamarripa

Martha Zamarripa, Mexican Ambassador to Belize

“From the bilateral cooperation programmes, there is no doubt that this is one of the signature collaboration initiatives that the Mexican government has implemented. For almost six years, we have joined forces with the Government of Belize under the guidance of AMEXCID and FAO, aiming to improve the quality of life of the children of Belize.”


Valerie Woods

Valerie Woods, Chair, Belize Parliamentary Alliance against Hunger and Malnutrition

“The rights of children, as it relates to health and nutrition, is not a political issue; it is not an issue that will be divisive. This report will only serve the BPAHM, as we call it the Belize Parliamentary Front, to look at what worked, what perhaps needed some improvement so that moving forward the initiative to eliminate hunger and malnutrition can be enhanced across the country.”


Duane Moody for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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