Dubai Cares in school feeding program
Dubai , December 4, 2010
Dubai Cares, the UAE-based philanthropic establishment, has signed a MoU with the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) to develop and implement a school feeding program which will benefit over 88,000 children in Bangladesh.
Dubai Cares was launched in September 2007 by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai to improve children’s access to primary education in developing countries.
The program, being implemented at a cost of over Dh9 million ($2.45 million) is targeted at primary school-aged children living in low-income families and to provide them with a variety of fortified foods on a sustained basis, said a Dubai Cares statement.
'Children make up 25 per cent of the one billion people hungry or undernourished in the world today. The impact of the lack of food and nutrition on children’s education is a serious issue,' remarked Tariq Al Gurg, CEO of Dubai Cares, after signing the deal.
'In line with our strategic partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, we have joined efforts with GAIN to develop a robust, cost-effective and sustainable two-year school feeding program that includes the provision of school meals in combination with a variety of nutritional interventions catering to over 88,000 children,' he added.
By preparing the food at a central facility and distributing it to schools, Al Gurg said, the cost will be significantly lower through economies of scale, reduced workload on school employees and reduced chances of misuse of commodities.
'At the same time supplementary food such as fortified yoghurt, biscuits, fortified bread and fortified food supplements with different nutritional qualities, will be sourced from the private sector which will enhance the local economy,' he stated.
“This partnership with Dubai Cares will provide invaluable support to schoolchildren in Bangladesh” said Marc Van Ameringen, executive director of GAIN.
“GAIN is proud that this partnership will build upon existing ties with Dubai, the UAE and the region to reach out to a larger number of children and give them hope for a better and brighter future', he added.
This program builds on the “School Feeding Campaign” launched by Dubai Cares under the direction of Sheikh Mohammed during Ramadan earlier this year, as part of its endeavor to help attain the UN Millennium Development Goal 2 of achieving universal primary education by 2015.-TradeArabia News Service