Why we need to unite to feed children while at school
16 Aug 2016 | Save | Email | Print | PDFIssued by: Peninsula School Feeding Association
In a call for Cape Town to unite against hunger at our schools, the Peninsula School Feeding Association (PSFA) announces that it's Charity Family Fun Walk, Blisters for Bread, will take place at the Green Point Cricket Club on Sunday, 28 August 2016. This fundraiser began in 1968, and its main purpose was to raise funds to feed hungry schoolchildren. It has since become one of the major highlights on the Cape Town events calendar. It will start from the Cape Town stadium, loop along the promenade and end with its usual fun, food and festivities at the Green Point Cricket Club. Your R50 entry will feed 25 children for a day.
Social impact of school feeding
The PSFA are structured to address childhood hunger. They focus entirely on school feeding and ways to improve their menu based on research. Their vision is to eradicate child-hunger and malnutrition. Even though the focus is narrowed to one main objective, it has a much broader social impact.
The statistics: A report from the University of Cape Town reveals that three out of four children go hungry every day. 30% of the South African population live in poverty with regard to food insecurity.
The consequence: Under-nutrition in children becomes irreversible if not addressed. Additional to the disastrous effect of hunger on education and a child’s future, another far-reaching outcome is a generation with poor immune systems, frequent illness, and a link to life-threatening diseases in adult life. Without intervention, today’s unmet need will have serious consequences for tomorrow.
The result: At school, hungry children are unable to concentrate due to hunger. Hunger is also the cause of many children not attending school at all.
The answer: To develop into his or her full potential, every child needs regular balanced nutrition across all food groups – protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. PSFA breakfasts and lunches are designed and prepared accordingly – costing only R2.00/day. Daily school meals provide an incentive to attend school, and help children to focus on their studies. As an individual, a family, a group, a club, or a company, you can help to provide this essential nutrition, thereby growing an educated, healthy, and winning generation.
By feeding children in school, the PSFA contribute to:
Learner attendance: By providing food, more children are incentivised to attend school. Also the energy and nutrition gives the child a better ability to learn, giving them more drive to attend school.
Learner performance: Without hunger and malnutrition, children will have more energy and an ability to learn. As they are able to better concentrate, their school marks improve. These children are unlikely to fall out of the schooling system.
Physiological performance: By eating healthy balanced meals on a daily basis, bone and muscle growth are improved and this helps children to perform better at sports, improving overall development.
Employment: Our school feeding program helps create job opportunities since we need educated staff to prepare the food. The more schools we can support, the more job opportunities we can provide.
Improved health and reduced costs: The nutrition improves the immune system; children will be healthier and have less sick days from school. Also it will reduces the amount of children in need of healthcare due to malnutrition related diseases.
Household economy: By providing school with lunch and breakfast where it is needed, we indirectly help take the strain off the household. Knowing that their children will be properly fed in school, a lot of money can be saved for families living in poverty.
Safe food handling: All our food is handled by trained staff in sanitary locations. It is an effective and organised way to make sure children receive food that is safe and secure thereby reducing germs and ultimately illnesses.
Supporting research In order to improve our menu and school feeding, we continue to support research on nutrition done in Cape Town Universities.
Stop short-term hunger and long-term School feeding gives children the possibility to make it through school. By stopping short-term hunger through nutritious meals, children will be healthier, more focused and become better students. In the long-term they will have better chances of making it in the future because they have not spent every day in school being hungry and thinking of food. As our slogan mentions; “you can’t teach a hungry child”.
We urge the public to enter our annual fundraiser, Blisters For Bread, by logging onto our website www.PSFA.org.za and if you cannot make the walk, do consider making a contribution towards the feeding of hungry schools children.
PSFA is a registered non-profit organisation dedicated to feeding hungry children while at school. PSFA was formed in 1958 and currently provides nutritious cooked meals to over 28 000 learners at 155 primary, secondary and special-needs schools as well as OVC’s, ECD’s and TVET’s throughout the Western Cape. PSFA has to date served over 1.5 billion meals to underprivileged school children.
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