Russia contributes more than US$21 million to support Tajikistan's school feeding programme
DUSHANBE – The Russian Federation has announced a contribution of US$11.2 million to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to develop a sustainable school feeding programme in Tajikistan. These funds will be used to implement the third and final phase of the project conducted by Russia and WFP from 2020 to 2023. The project is focusing mainly on the renovation of school canteens, training staff at Tajik schools and promoting healthy diets.
In addition, the Russian Federation also provides US$10 million to purchase Russian food commodities that will be used to meet the needs of schoolchildren in Tajikistan during the period 2020-2021.
“Over the past six years, the Russian Federation, jointly with WFP, has supported the efforts of the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan to develop an effective and a self-sufficient national school feeding programme”, says Igor Lyakin-Frolov, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Republic of Tajikistan. “This is one of our largest projects in the country with a total contribution of almost US$80 million to date. Improving the health and development of schoolchildren is an important contribution from Russia to the future of the entire country.”
In 2013, with the financial support of the Russian Federation, WFP launched the project of the sustainable development of the school feeding programme in Tajikistan. In close cooperation with the Tajik Ministry of Health and Social Protection of the Population, the Ministry of Education and Science and the Russian NGO Social and Industrial Foodservice Institute (SIFI), WFP was able to renovate equipment at school canteens and conduct trainings for staff from almost 60 schools during the first two phases (2013-2015) and (2016-2019) of the project with a total budget of US$17.1 million.
“Thanks to the close partnership with the Government of Tajikistan and the continued support from the Russian Federation, WFP helps the young generation of the country reach their full potential,” says Alberto Correia Mendes, WFP Representative and Country Director in Tajikistan. “Providing healthy food to children at school can mean not only better nutrition and health, but also increased access to education and brighter future.”
Starting from 2021, the implementation of the national school feeding programme will be gradually handed over to the responsible authorities in Tajikistan.
The school feeding programme is WFP’s largest operation in Tajikistan and represents the organization’s strong commitment to changing lives and strengthening institutional capacities in the country. Since 1999, WFP has been partnering with the government to implement the school feeding programme.
The Russian Federation remains a key partner for Tajikistan and WFP in strengthening food security in the country. The Russian support is not limited to supporting school feeding, but during 2005 and 2012, the Government of the Russian Federation allocated US$36.5 million through WFP to purchase food to support vulnerable people in Tajikistan.
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