Re: From economic growth to food security and better nutrition

Final Year Economics Students (group 1)

We are in total agreement with Mr. Tim Willams. Equitable and strong economic growth of a country is based in part on growth of the agricultural and rural economy of low-income communities and goes a long way in enhancing access to food and improving nutrition of the very poor. However, some of the changes made possible through economic growth take time to bear fruit and the neediest population groups often cannot take immediate advantage of the opportunities it generates. Therefore, reducing hunger requires specific attention to both small- and large-scale interventions. Hence, the Peanut CRSP Initiatives undertaken by the Society for Sustainable Operational Strategies (SSOS) and the MOE in region 9, in Guyana is advantageous.

The success of the Expansion of the Ministry of Education’s School Snack Program in the Rupununi Region (Target Region) has been impressive, this conclusion was made based on the 2010 annual report (most recent) of the School Feeding Programme. In detail, “ Between the period of January 29, 2010- December 2010 numerous strides had been made; by the end of December 2010 the program had surpassed its target, reaching  41 villages (the target was 33), Total snacks served reached 311,345, 23 SSMCs  (School Snack Management Committees) received startup loans to purchase basic raw materials and pay salaries for the first two months; of these, 16 repaid their loans fully before the end of the year, Over 40 women were given full time jobs managing their respective programs, New markets for peanuts, cassava and fruits earned farmers over $8 million, and Over $22 million was injected into 41 communities, creating a multiplier effect and making a significant impact on the quality of village life.” Executive Officer, SSOS