Jacinda Ardern promises FREE lunches to 21,000 school children while she promises to prevent children from starving
- The free lunch program will be rolled out in all New Zealand schools in 2020
- In the following year, no fewer than 21,000 students will be fed in 120 schools
- Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the initiative was a crackdown on child hunger
- Ardern said that many families struggled to provide sufficient food for their children
New Zealand school children receive a free lunch every day if the government promises to prevent young people from starving.
The new program will be rolled out in 30 schools in 2020 across the country and will feed around 5,000 students between years 1 and 8.
That range is not expected to grow until the following year with plans to feed as many as 21,000 children in 120 schools.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the news during a visit to Kaitao Intermediate School in Rotorua on Thursday.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern (photo) announced the news during a visit to Kaitao Intermediate School in Rotorua on Thursday
The new program will be rolled out in 30 schools throughout the country in 2020 and will feed around 5,000 students in year one and eight (photo, Mrs. Ardern attends a school earlier this year)
& # 39; Do we want our children to go hungry? & # 39; Ardern asked.
& # 39; The obvious answer is no. That is why the government is rolling out this school lunch program to the children in New Zealand who need our support the most. & # 39;
The lunch program is only one of the 75 initiatives of the child and youth welfare strategy in an effort to reduce child poverty and provide better support services.
& # 39; Reducing child poverty is a key goal of this government and the $ 5.5 billion family package and initiatives in the welfare budget will take 50,000-74,000 children out of poverty & # 39 ;, Ardern said.
The New Zealand leader said children were interviewed during the strategy consultation phase.
She revealed that a large number admitted that an empty stomach was an obstacle to their learning.
& # 39; That was heartbreaking to hear and this prototype is starting to ensure that children are fed and have the best chance of succeeding, & # 39; she said.
& # 39; You just can't learn distracted by an empty stomach.
& # 39; Many families in New Zealand are struggling to provide enough food for their children. A healthy lunch every day helps alleviate one of the worst aspects of deprivation for hungry children. & # 39;
Although the national education spokesperson Nikki Kaye told it NZ Herald she believed the program was poorly designed.
She claimed that many schools were not equipped with kitchens large enough to carry out or store food preparations.
Mrs. Kaye claimed that minimal funding had been provided for equipment and that the school would be responsible for ensuring that the children were fed.
& # 39; If this is the start of a universal free lunch program for all schools, it would cost hundreds of millions and take away the autonomy of parents to have their children have lunch, & # 39; she said.
The lunch program is just one of the 75 initiatives of the Child and Youth Welfare Strategy in an effort to tackle child poverty and provide better support services (photo, Mrs Ardern attends a school earlier this year)
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