Snacks help boost health of schoolchildren in Upper Egypt's Sohag

Ingy Deif, Monday 12 Nov 2012

Improve the nutrition of schoolchildren and you help not only their health but also their education. Sohag benefits from collaboration between bank and UN agency

Photo: AP

Collaboration between the banking sector and the World Food Programme (WFP) has been providing poor Egyptian children with healthy snacks that boost their concentration and ensure their attendance at school.

Sohag in Upper Egypt has been the target of cooperation between the WFP and the National Bank of Egypt in line with the government’s efforts to improve education by 2015 and abide by the guidelines of the United Nations Millennium Goals.

The National Bank of Egypt financed the initiative with LE1 million. The money will provide the families of 9,500 young schoolchildren with vitamin A and iron-enriched snacks to boost their concentration. In addition, it presents the families with a ten-kilogram allowance of rice each month, but with a condition.

The initiative will only include those whose attendance exceeds 80 per cent, thus improving the children’s health and ensuring their attendance at school.

Tarek Amer, chairperson of the National Bank of Egypt, stressed that the one-year initiative in Sohag was in line with the bank’s responsibility towards society. It would help boost the wellbeing of underprivileged children and give parents an incentive to enrol their children at school.

WFP Egypt director Gian Pietro Bordignon also emphasised the programme’s dual aim of improving child health and encouraging school attendance.

The quantity of rice given to the families is almost equal to the amount that could be bought with the earnings of the child if he or she was working.

Every year the WFP helps feed around ninety million people in more than seventy countries.


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