Over 5M Meals Provided to Ukrainian Students in 2023-2024 by WFP

KYIV - Thanks to generous funding from the government of France and private donors, the UN World Food Programme (WFP) helped schools serve 5.6 million hot meals for close to 90,000 primary school children in the 2023-2024 academic year in Ukraine.

As part of its school feeding programme, WFP funds 30 percent of the cost of daily hot meals for children in 673 schools across Ukraine. Schools use the funds to improve the quality of the meals or to reduce the fees parents pay to school canteens. In total, WFP transferred more than UAH 66 million to participating schools.

The programme is implemented in Kyiv, Lviv, Zakarpattia, Ternopil, Khmelnytskyi, Chernihiv, Chernivtsi, Cherkasy, Mykolaiv, Odesa, Poltava, Sumy, and Vinnytsia oblasts - selected based on criteria such as the number of internally displaced families and levels of food insecurity.

"One of our top priorities is to ensure that children receive tasty, healthy meals every day at school, and to help their parents spend less of their budget on food and less time worrying about their children's nutrition," said Marianne Ward, WFP Ukraine Country Director ad interim. "We are proud to work closely with the Government and regional authorities on this programme and looking forward to next year."

"Providing high-quality nutrition in schools for all students is essential for their health both now and in the future. It is during childhood that dietary habits are formed, and it is within our power to teach children to choose healthy foods," said Andriy Stashkiv, Deputy Minister of Education and Science of Ukraine. "WFP supports us with children's nutrition, as the humanitarian situation in Ukraine means that not all parents can afford school lunches. I am thankful to WFP for their cooperation and the significant contribution they make to the health of our students."

WFP implements the programme under the framework of the Government's School Nutrition Reform led by First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska, in close coordination with the Ministry of Education and Science. The programme was started in 2022, initially for 58 schools in Kyiv oblast, before expanding across the country this year.

School feeding is one of many ways WFP supports Ukrainians affected by the war. WFP also distributes food boxes in areas closest to the frontline, where food is hard to find or very expensive, distributes cash assistance to vulnerable Ukrainians across the country, and supports the safe release of mined agricultural land in the Kharkiv region to help farmers and food producers resume work. WFP also chartered 25 vessels to export Ukrainian grain to countries in need through the Black Sea Grain Initiative and the Grain From Ukraine Initiative.

/Public Release. This material from the originating organization/author(s) might be of the point-in-time nature, and edited for clarity, style and length. Mirage.News does not take institutional positions or sides, and all views, positions, and conclusions expressed herein are solely those of the author(s).View in full here.