The State of Osun’s School Feeding Programme (O’MEALS) has progressively grown to serve over 252,793 public primary school pupils since 2012. As a strategy to combat hunger and poverty, the O’MEALS programme has become hugely popular across the State.
In 2004, the Federal Government of Nigeria initiated the Home Grown School Feeding and Health Programme through the Universal Basic Education Act. To begin the national programme the Federal Ministry of Education decided on a pilot rollout for the programme in 13 states which was carried out through a series of phases. The O'MEALS Programme is now the only programme of the original 13 to continue implementation and it represents a model of good practice amongst school feeding initiatives in Nigeria.
At policy level, there is commitment from many ministries that are key to the success of O’MEALS; these include ministries such as health, agriculture, environment and sanitation and commerce. Donor support has been well expressed through the Sahara group PLC and CHI Pharmaceuticals. However the programme is mostly funded by Osun State Government.
Key programme successes:
- Significant retention and enrolment increases in primary schools across the state
- Economic empowerment for 600 poultry farmers who supply chicken to the pro-capacity building for 2000 fish farmers and 2000 cocoyam farmers
- Employment of 3007 food vendors (who were previously unemployed) in the state.
The programme as a whole is highly valued by the Osun State natives; its vast profile has seen the benefits of HGSF felt in many isolated communities.
For more information download the two page O'MEALS Programme Snapshot.