"Pate Bhar" - The Midday Meal Program at Swarachna School
Here's a report from local co-ordinator Dhirendra Pratap Singh:
A socio-economic survey of our school showed that more than about 85% of children come from Below Poverty Line (BPL) families.
As a result most children could not bring lunch boxes for the afternoon meal. The few who did mostly brought last night’s roti and sugar.
A health checkup brought to attention the fact that most of our children were underweight and malnourished. The problem was a serious one and had to be addressed. Children cannot be expected to study or pay attention in classes on a hungry stomach.
In June of 2011, Milaan began the midday meal program to provide at least one nutritionally complete meal as part of the school day. Currently the Swarachna Learning and Resource Centre located in rural UP, caters for meals for around 300 children on an average.
The two instant and visible impacts of the midday meal programme are,
- academic performance of the student has gone up
- school is able to retain a greater number of children
The incentive of a full belly keeps the children coming back to the school everyday which means that they regularly attend classes which in turn has a direct impact on their academic results.
We think you will agree this is an incredible outcome from a simple initiative.
Programs like this are only possible with your support and donations. Thank you.