World Vision Mozambique and partners join forces to improve education and child nutrition

ByWorld Vision

World Vision Mozambique and partners join forces to improve education and child nutrition

World Vision, the Government of Mozambique, civil society, and humanitarian organizations are committed to improving the learning conditions of 85,000 school-aged children in the districts of Monapo and Meconta, in Nampula province, and Milange district, Zambézia province, in central and north regions.

The need to improve food security, reduce the incidence of hunger, and improve literacy and primary education resulted in the conception of the “Partnering for Sustainable Education Outcomes” (PARES) project.

The grant is worth 35 million us-dollars funded under the McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Program of the United States Department of Agriculture.

From 26 to 28 of February, World Vision-Mozambique hosted the start-up workshop attended by members of the Provincial Executive Councils of Nampula and Zambézia, respectively, district administrators, delegates from World Vision US, staff and senior leadership of WV Moz.

The National Director of World Vision Mozambique, Maria Carolina Silva specified that the PARES project’s purpose is to improve the literacy skills of school-aged children and promote the use of good health, nutrition, and diet practices. To achieve those strategic objectives the project will carry out various activities, focusing on:

Provide daily school meals; rehabilitate and build boreholes and small water supply systems; promote reading and writing activities; train teachers in Unlock Literacy; provide teaching and learning materials; develop partnerships with farmers groups to supply food to schools; conduct deworming campaigns and supplementation to students; promote community engagement and set accountability mechanisms.

Maria Carolina Silva emphasized that PARES is under the umbrella of World Vision Mozambique’s promise for the 2021-2025 period.

“We want to make a significant and sustainable contribution to the well-being of 4 million vulnerable children because transformational development that results in the continued upliftment and nurture of the most vulnerable girls and boys is the main objective of World Vision-Mozambique’s work,” she said.

PARES project will benefit from lessons learned in past interventions of McGovern-Dole and, for this reason, the Chief of Party sees a strong potential for impact.

“We have everything to succeed because this program will benefit from the lessons learned in past and current initiatives like the Educating Children Together project that ends in September 2024. Therefore, we need to share information with our partners,” recommended Richard Ndou.

At the launch of the project, the Governor of Nampula, Manuel Rodrigues, praised the project’s potential to reverse the indicators of chronic malnutrition and school dropout.

“Nampula has a prevalence of chronic and acute malnutrition of 46.7% and 4% respectively, especially in children under five, which is above the national average. This is one of the major challenges we face and we want to join forces to overcome this problem, and one of the ways is through the PARES project,” said the Governor.

For the project’s success, Manuel Rodrigues strongly advocates that communities be empowered to lead the transformations they want to see.

“Improving diet, health, and hygiene conditions, including sanitation, student and teacher attendance, are undoubtedly ways of contributing to the well-being of our society in Nampula and Zambézia. That’s why we want our population to take ownership of the various components in this project,” urged the Governor.

In the same light, the Provincial Director of Education in Zambézia, Joaquim Oficial, expressed his confidence in the project achieving its intended objectives. “The planned activities will boost our students’ reading and writing skills. We, as beneficiaries of the project, will provide our collaboration for its success,” he said.

PARES is a consortium led by World Vision Mozambique in partnership with the National School Feeding Program (PRONAE) of the Ministry of Education and Human Development, the Centre of Learning and Capacity Building of Civil Society (CESC), Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).