Improving nutrition among Syrian children through education

Improving nutrition among Syrian children through education

29/03/2018

Thousands of Syrian school children participated in food and nutrition education that used gardens to teach them about the importance of eating fruit and vegetables as part of a healthy diet.

Primary-school students in the Syrian Arab Republic learned about nutrition while planting and growing nutritious produce, which they ate at school and took home to share with their families. To facilitate this type of hands-on learning and foster a nutrition- and health-friendly environment, 300 teachers were trained in 17 schools, including in conflict-affected Aleppo, Hama, Homs, Idleb and Rural Damascus. Each school cultivated a garden, equipped with water tanks and irrigation systems.

“At school, they taught us about cabbages, peppers, tomatoes, eggplants, lettuce and a lot of other foods. They also taught us the food pyramid and all about vitamins and how we benefit from them,” said Bilasan, a fifth grader from Bahaa Eddin Sajer Primary School in Rural Damascus governorate.

Schools provide opportunities for children to acquire important life skills, and FAO works with partners such as the United Nations Children’s Fund and the World Food Programme to improve children’s nutrition and help them to develop and grow. The benefits of these gardens extend beyond the classrooms, influencing children’s families and communities.