4-H Ghana, a non-government organisation, in collaboration with Farmers Abroad Canada, has initiated a three-year pilot project named Sustainable School Feeding Model, operating on the theme “Feeding the Children: My Concern.”
It is a resilient food security programme that is being implemented in rural communities in Ghana to tackle the nutritional gap by providing sustainable meals to school children and encourage school enrollment among schoolchildren.
Mr. Appiah Kwaku Boateng, Executive Director of 4-H Ghana, mentioned the goal of the project at the launching ceremony held for Akohia Presbyterian Primary School in the Upper Manya Krobo district of the Eastern region.
“Providing meals to these children will not only motivate them to be in school but also improve their nutritional deficiencies and the acquisition of basic knowledge that will shape their lives so they can contribute their quota to the development of their community, country, and the world at large,” he said.
The project, which is taking place in schools in the Upper Manya Krobo and Yilo Krobo Districts, focuses on rural communities where school gardens are made by community members with support from 4-H Ghana.
The organisation provides the schools with agriculture input and technical support from Agriculture Extension Agents to produce more food to feed children in the schools.
Mr. Boateng said: “The use of the school garden serves as a demonstration farm where agricultural knowledge is transferred to the smallholder farmers in the communities.”
The community members of Akohia have acquired four acres of land, weeded it, and the organisation has provided them with improved maize and bean seeds, NPK fertilizer, a Knapsack spraying machine, and agrochemicals to boost yields.
In addition, some schools in the two districts are being supported with agriculture inputs such as improved seeds, fertilizers and tools to strengthen and promote the School-Based Agriculture Education (SBAE) that 4-H Ghana is already doing in some schools.
As part of the launching ceremony, an 11-member committee was inaugurated to take charge of the activities of the 4-H Ghana Sustainable School Feeding Model project.
They were trained in the best agricultural practices by the district’s agricultural extension agents and in how to ensure that food is prepared with conserved nutrients.
Mr. Eric Tetteh Larweh, the District Sports Coordinator, on behalf of the District Director of Education, said it was important that the Akohia community has embraced the project and urged them to keep up the hard work and the collaborative spirit to improve the schoolchildren’s health and growth.
4-H Ghana, an NGO that empowers youth and transforms communities through agriculture, leadership, and life skills, operates in six regions, the executive director said.
The NGO seeks to contribute towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly SDG One (no poverty), SDG two (zero hunger), SDG three (good health and well-being), and SDG four (quality education).
Farmers Abroad Canada, the sponsor of the Sustainable School Feeding Model project, is a registered charitable organisation that aims to serve as an amplifier for existing community-based agricultural programmes in developing countries.