Latest news

Heading for the capital: experts discussed the creation of an integrated school feeding system in Yerevan

Representatives of SIFI Vladimir Chernigov and Oksana Zotova, UN WFP Yesai Nikoyan, Maria Muradyan, School Feeding and Child Welfare Agency Satenik Mkrtchyan together with Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sports of Armenia Zhanna Andreasyan and Advisor Deputy Prime Minister of Armenia Karen Iskhanyan discussed issues of sustainable school feeding system in Yerevan.

The implementation of the School Feeding Programme in Armenia began with the coverage of the most vulnerable regions and gradually reached the capital. It is Yerevan's turn now to get involved in providing young schoolchildren with hot school meals.

One of the main topics on the agenda was the presentation of the report on the infrastructure assessment of schools in Yerevan, which SIFI, together with WFP, held in December 2021.
Based on data on the availability and condition of school canteens, the participants of the meeting exchanged experiences and ideas on possible models for organizing school meals.

After studying the existing system of school meals in Yerevan, experts note that many schools have buffets, where students can only buy pastries, sweets and bottled drinks. Meanwhile, according to statistics and studies, Yerevan is in first place in terms of childhood obesity and second in terms of the proportion of overweight children. A full and balanced hot meals, according to experts, can positively affect this situation.

After completion of the study on the possibility of organizing school meals in Yerevan, which also includes in-depth surveys of school administration, teachers, parents and schoolchildren, marketing analysis of suppliers and catering establishments, and development of school feeding models, the project will move to the stage of creating an integrated school feeding system.

Currently, 10 marzes in Armenia are covered with school meals, with the exception of schools in Yerevan so far. Eight marzes out of ten are included in the National School Feeding Programme, which has been implemented since 2014. The remaining two — Armavir and Kotayk provide school meals with the support of WFP, but at the end of 2022 they will also be included in the National Programme.