​October 16 was World Food Day, a day which aims to heighten public awareness of world food problems and strengthen solidarity in the struggle against hunger, malnutrition and poverty.

Girl eating in school
"Across the developing world, 66 million primary school-age childrengo to school hungry, 23 million of these children live in Africa alone. 1 out of 4 children – roughly 146 million – in developing countries is underweight."

Without adequate food and nutrition it is far more difficult for a child to learn. It is a crucial factor for learning and education.

Disadvantaged children –the poor, the marginalized, girls, children in fragile states– often suffer the most from ill health and malnutrition and therefore benefit most from school health programmes and school feeding.

A daily school meal helps children learn better and it provides a strong incentive for poor parents to send their children to school. It allows children to focus on their studies, rather than their stomachs and can also contribute to enhancing a child's nutrition.

Reducing malnutrition is a cornerstone of poverty reduction. Deficiencies such as Iron Deficiency, Iodine deficiency, and Vitamin A.

Thesedeficienciesnegatively impact on children’s physical growth and mental development leading to stunting, poor cognitive function and poor school performance.

Improving Food Security & Eradicating Hunger through HGSF

Smallholder farmer

The theme for World Food Day 2012 is 'Agricultural cooperatives – key to feeding the world', which seeks to highlight the role of cooperatives in improving food security and contributing to the eradication of hunger.


In an effort to improve child nutrition, food security and local farmer income, the Partnership for Child Development launched a new project that supports government action to deliver cost effective school feeding programmes in sub-Saharan Africa called Home Grown School Feeding (HGSF).

This project promotes local agriculture and benefit rural farmers by using locally-sourced food, providing regular orders and a reliable income for local farmers, the majority of whom are women who deliver food to be used in school feeding programmes, so at the same time this improves the education, health, and nutrition of children.

HGSF not only creates jobs and profits for smallholder farmers, but adheres to the theme of this years World Food Day increasingsustainable livelihoods for thoseinvolved in the transportation, processing, and preparation of food along the school feeding supply chain.

For more information visit the website of Home Grown School Feeding and watch the Introduction to HGSF Video.

And see specific pages explaining the interconnected nature of the initiative on: