Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board (LASUBEB) has begun a five-day training for food vendors, food handlers and other stakeholders ahead of restart of School Feeding Programme of the Federal government.
The programme was disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Executive Chairman of LASUBEB, Mr Wahab Alawiye-King, said the training was held to sensitise stakeholders about effective monitoring of the programme.
Alawiye-King added that it would help in maintaining food hygiene in strict adherence to all public health guidelines of COVID-19 in schools.
“One of the social intervention programmes of the Federal Government, whereby pupils in Primary 1 to Primary 3 are given one nutritious meal a day under the National Home Grown School Feeding Programme, was halted due to the outbreak of the COVID-19.
“To commence the programme with the existing safe re-opening of schools, LASUBEB, in collaboration with the National Home Grown School Feeding Programme, embarked on a give-day training for food vendors and food handlers.
“The training, which had the theme: ‘Quality Nutrition and Healthy Lifestyle During COVID-19’, is aimed at strengthening food vendors in discharging their duties hygienically and efficiently,” he said.
The chairman said that application of sound principles of environmental sanitation, personal hygiene and established food safety practices could not be over-emphasised.
He said that free mid-day meals would not only improve psychological, social, emotional and physical wellbeing of the pupils but would also reduce adverse effects of the pandemic on the vulnerable.
According to him, the school feeding programme has continued to increase enrolment and retention rates of pupils in public primary schools.
““Let us remember that the war against COVID-19 is not over yet, we must continue to take adequate preventive measures.
“I charge the participants to carry out their duties with all sense of care and proper hygiene practices,’’ Alawiye-King said.
He disclosed that about 37,589 households of pupils got take-home rations of food items during COVID-19-induced lockdowns, under the Modified Home Grown School Feeding Programme.
Mr Bayo Adefuye, LASUBEB Board Member in charge of special projects, said that the workshop was organised for the state implementation team drawn from the Primary Health Care Board, Ministry of Health and Ministry of Agriculture, among other ministries, agencies and department. (NAN)