16 representatives from Uganda are in Brazil where they participate in a series of technical visits and meetings. The Ugandan delegation wants to get to know the school feeding system closely, particularly the National School Feeding Program (PNAE).
The mission was organized by the Center for Excellence against Hunger, the World Food Program and the Brazilian Cooperation Agency (ABC). The roadmap includes technical details on the legislation involving the PNAE and the dynamics of the school feeding model combined with family farming, as well as visits to urban and rural schools benefited by the Program and also to the Food Distribution Center (CEASA). Representatives will also learn about the reality of family farmers who provide the food they eat at school, which are critical to the success of the program.
“It is very gratifying to see that another country in Africa is coming to know the Brazilian experience”.
“There is a whole chain of productive activity in the country that makes the program a matter of macroeconomic policy, with direct impact on the operation of various public policies,” explains Ambassador Ruy Pereira, director of ABC. According to him, the school feeding program is not just an educational issue, as it involves many actors in the production chain, taking into consideration all the stages that range from production in the field to food served on the school lunch plate.
Daniel Balaban, director of the Center for Excellence against Hunger, stressed the importance of the presence of four ministers of state participating in the mission. “The presence of four ministers is a sample that they understand that public policies such as these are integrative and that their success depends on this integration,” he warned. “For us, it is very gratifying to see that another country in Africa is coming to know the Brazilian experience, which has served as models for so many other countries.”
The National School Feeding Program has been in existence for over 60 years. Although executed by the Ministry of Education, it integrates several actors involved in the food production chain. “The program has intersectionality with other ministries, which makes it have a magnitude,” says Valmo Xavier da Silva, general coordinator of PNAE. “This exchange of experiences has greatly helped the creation of school feeding programs in other countries and this strengthens both Brazilian public policy and we have also learned from the experience of other countries.
Although not directly involved with the mission, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) sent its Ugandan representative, Antonio Querido, to get a closer look at the details of the Program involving family food production. “At FAO, we see the family farming dimension as an important element of success for the school feeding program and we believe that good Brazilian practice will serve as a model for the Ugandan reality.”
“The program has intersectionality with other ministries, which makes it have a magnitude”
For Uganda’s Minister of Education and Sports, Rosemary Seninde Nansubuga, the mission aims to know in depth the role of each of the actors participating in the program. “We know that in order to develop we need to emphasize education,” he said. “Our policy is clear about keeping children in schools, but many are leaving school because of a lack of food, and we want to learn about good school feeding practices in Brazil to change that,” he recalled. “At the end of this mission, we will be rich in knowledge,” he concludes.
With information from ABC