Advocacy group, SEND Ghana is asking government to as a matter of urgency increase the school feeding grant to GHS2 to improve the quality of meals given to school children.
In the 2022 budget statement presented to Parliament by Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta, it is the vision of the government to expand coverage of the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) from 3.4 million to over 4 million beneficiaries in 2022.
Although SEND Ghana says it is good news and brings a lot of delight, the advocacy group insists that more needs to be done.
Through a release issued by the subsidiary of SEND Foundation of West Africa, it is calling on the government to put in efforts to improve the quality of the food served school children.
“We are happy to note the government’s intention. However, it is not enough to expand coverage and compromise the quality of meals served to school children. The GSPF is currently providing GHS1 for a plate of food per child.
“We maintain that this is inadequate and cannot guarantee a healthy meal for children who require nutrition for their cognitive and physical development. We urge the government to increase the amount to at least GHS2 per child to ensure the program attains its short-term objective to reduce hunger and malnutrition,” part of the release from SEND Ghana reads.
SEND Ghana cautions that in taking this step, government must ensure that other interventions such as child trafficking and domestic violence, which get approximately 0.2% each, should not suffer.
SEND Ghana also wants Parliament to critically review the education sector budget and consider realigning it so that other equally important areas will not suffer unduly.