Nepal | August 05, 2020

Meal scheme aims to reduce absenteeism in schools

Himalayan News Service
Share Now:

Kathmandu, December 29: The Ministry of Education is preparing to provide fortified rice as school meal for children in the country.

The programme, which will be launched in January, will cover primary level schools in 10 districts including Bajhang, Bajura, Accham, Dadeldhura, Baitadi, Darchula, Rukum, Dailelh and Jajarkot.

Earlier, the education ministry provided Unilito — cereal flour for schoolchildren. However, the ministry decided to place it with rice after it was revealed that the “flour was served without
cooking.”

“We have decided to provide fortified rice as it is easy to cook and is nutritious for children. Fortification is the practice of deliberately increasing the content of an essential micronutrient, such as vitamins and minerals (including trace elements) in a food, so as to improve its nutritional quality. It is beneficial for schoolchildren as the food is healthy,” said Bishnu Prasad Bhandari, acting programme director, Food for Education Project, Ministry of Education.

“A pilot project was launched in Darchula since last year and as the trial has become successful the ministry is planning to extend it to other nine districts,” said Bhandari, adding that meal will be provided for 200 days a year to 236,000 schoolchildren.

The education ministry has already imparted training to 2,200 schools to launch the programme.

“The programme is aimed at reducing absenteeism in schools. It will also help reduce malnutrition among children,” added Bhandari.

As per Nepal Demographic and Health Survey 2016, 36 per cent children below five years of age are stunted, 12 per cent severely stunted, 10 per cent wasted, two per cent severely wasted (too thin for their height), 27 per cent underweight, five per cent severely underweight (too thin for their age), while around 1 per cent of the children are overweight (heavy for their height) in the country.

“The programme the education ministry is preparing to launch aims to reduce hunger and malnutrition among children,” added Bhandari.


A version of this article appears in print on December 30, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.


Follow The Himalayan Times on Twitter and Facebook

Recommended Stories:

More from The Himalayan Times:

Sushil Bhatta appointed IBN CEO

KATHMANDU: Sushil Bhatta, a member of the National Planning Commission, has been appointed as the chief executive officer of Investment Board Nepal (IBN). The Cabinet meeting on Monday decided to appoint Bhatta to IBN’s top post which was vacant since then CEO Maha Prasad Adhikari was appointed Read More...

Pakistan must hit the ground running against England: Misbah

Pakistan will have to hit the ground running if they are to have any chance against England in their three-test series which starts on Wednesday, coach Misbah-ul-Haq said. Six months since their last test match, Pakistan go into the games at bio-secure venues in Manchester and Southampton aga Read More...

MoHP lists swab collection centres in Kathmandu; urges public to follow safety guidelines

KATHMANDU: The Ministry of Health and Population on Tuesday announced 14 swab collection centres to facilitate extensive testing of coronavirus infection in Kathmandu valley at a time when new cases have been on the rise. MoHP has urged the public to visit the swab collection centres from 9:00 am Read More...

Gai Jatra: Festival that honours the memory of those departed

KATHMANDU: Gai Jatra, literally translated to the festival of cows, is observed by bereaved families by taking out procession in memory of the ones they have lost. People, especially children, walk in different costumes, and the processions are also accompanied by traditional bands. Gai Jatra is Read More...

A woman carrying an umbrella crosses a flooded street as it rains in Mumbai

Heavy rain batters India's Mumbai disrupting rail and road traffic

MUMBAI: Authorities in the Indian city of Mumbai issued a red alert on Tuesday and warned people not to venture out after heavy overnight rain in the financial hub brought flooding and travel chaos. Some suburbs have seen more than 300 mm of rain in the 24 hours to Tuesday morning and more heavy Read More...

Nepal’s COVID-19 count crosses the 21k mark, 259 new cases detected on Tuesday

KATHMANDU: The Ministry of Health and Population has recorded 259 new cases of the coronavirus infection on Tuesday, taking the nationwide count to 21,009. The new infections were confirmed after testing 7,687 specimens through PCR method across the nation in the last 24 hours. Among the new c Read More...

Nepal COVID-19 Update: 259 new cases, 65 recoveries, one fatality recorded today

KATHMANDU: Nepal’s Health Ministry, in its regular press briefing, shared the latest updates on coronavirus contagion from across the country, and government’s response to the health crisis. As of today, 406,494 tests through Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) method have been carried out, w Read More...