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One pupil, One cup of cocoa drink...as School Feeding/COCOBOD initiate project


Date: Thursday August 15, 2019, 9:52 pm


By: WatchGhana.Com/Felicia Yemoley Buabeng


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Government of Ghana is implementing policies that will help instill the habit of cocoa consumption in the populace and will in the long run, create market for cocoa products in the country. One of these policy initiatives is to provide a cup of cocoa drink to all Kindergarten, Primary and Junior High School pupils in Ghana on every other school-going day that is three (3) times per week preferably Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. 
The main objective of this initiative is to also inculcate the habit of cocoa consumption in basic school pupils in Ghana through the Ghana School Feeding Programme and this will yield economic, health and nutritional benefits for children since they are in their formative years.
A stakeholders meeting was held in Accra on 14th August, 2019 to deliberate on the best options of available models to implement this project on critical areas such as packaging models, school selection criteria, waste management, sustainability, caterer models, supervision amongst others. 
The meeting sought stakeholders input or review into the modalities for the implementation of the project and stimulated stakeholders’ commitment to the project.
One of the main focus of the project is at selected districts in cocoa growing regions. The serving periods in the selected schools will be before classes begins that is the hours of 07:00 and 08.00 GMT. Pupils are mandated to consume product in class/school and deposit package in a designated bin. School authorities are to ensure proper disposal to avoid waste issues and bins will be provided for the disposal of the waste. The Official launch of the project is September 10, 2019.

The Ag. National Coordinator for the Ghana School Feeding Programme, Dr. Mrs. Gertrude Quashigah has congratulated government for this laudable initiative saying government has so much passion for cocoa and this will be a source of joy to the farmers since they will witness their children benefit from their labour especially in the cocoa growing areas. She said the Department of School Feeding who are the main implementers will support this project by giving technical knowledge and advice when needed through monitoring and evaluation of the entire exercise. She added that the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection will forge ahead to ensure that government’s dream comes to pass.
Mr. Benjamin Larweh the Principal Public Affairs Director for COCOBOD who represented the CEO of COCOBOD said they are fully committed in ensuring that this initiative comes to fruition and that the company has set aside some funding for the one year pilot programme even though they feel it may not be adequate to carry out the exercise. He therefore urged stakeholders to bring innovative ideas that will help them acquire additional funds to carry out this laudable initiative. He also pleaded with stakeholders of the project to commit to their agreement to achieve positive results. 
Participants for the entire project have been drawn from various Ministries, departments and private sectors which includes Ministries of Education, Health, Agriculture, Finance, Local Government and Rural Development; Gender, Children and Social Protection amongst others such as Ghana Cocoa Board, Food and Drugs Authority, Ghana Health Service, University of Ghana Nutrition and Food Science Department and Food and Agriculture Organisation. 

Source: WatchGhana.Com/Felicia Yemoley Buabeng

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Author: WatchGhana.Com    Verified

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