Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition (FSN Forum)

Dear participants, 

It is great to see reference in the discussion to India’s Mid-Day Meal Scheme, which is the largest school feeding program in the world. Almost every country has a government-led program making it one of the most common nutrition-sensitive safety net tools globally. Adolescent girls may be reached through this intervention, and the nutritional status of the next generation may also be affected.

In Ghana, the Partnership for Child Development (PCD), has worked closely with the Ministries of Local Government, Health and Agriculture to promote the delivery of school feeding rations that provide 30% RDA of energy and key nutrients such as iron through locally produced, diverse foods. The linkages with local agriculture along with the provision of nutrition education and behavioural change communication can amplify the program’s social protection and nutrition benefits to the community. The recognition of school feeding as a social protection tool in Ghana is reflected in the recent reorganization placing the program in the Ministry of Social Protection.

Your question on M&E is intriguing and the comments from Matilde are insightful. While it is important to monitor the effectiveness on nutrition, this potential is very much contingent on the quality of implementation. Thus it is critical for M&E to include robust process indicators and appropriate targets, and these may be specific to the actual program. There is a strong need to support governments develop strong M&E systems that can enhance the delivery of effective programming. 

Meena Fernandes, Senior Research Advisor

Getrude Anase-Baiden, Ghana Programmes Manager

Partnership for Child Development, Imperial College London