Standard Bank supports Mary’s Meals School feeding programme
Standard Bank, through its Limbe Branch, has donated K1 million to the global school feeding charity, Mary’s Meals aimed at feeding 45 primary school children for a full academic year.
At the cheque presentation on Wednesday, Standard Bank’s Head of Innovation, Ecosystems & Partnerships, Alipo Nyondo said the donation is aimed at ensuring that children are supported in their pursuit for education to ensure that there are no school dropouts.
“Standard Bank appreciates the efforts by government and Mary’s Meals to provide for the needs of the children through the school feeding programme,” Nyondo said. “Therefore, through our branch corporate social Investment programme, Limbe Branch has donated this amount to support children in primary school.”
This is part of Standard Bank’s theme of ‘Malawi is our Home, We Drive her Growth’, which is towards the country’s overall economic growth through education.
“As a bank working towards driving the growth of Malawi, we look at education as a strategic sector to achieve our purpose,” Nyondo said. “Therefore, we looked at the right partner who can help us to be part of the development of the country and Mary’s Meals emerged very strategic.”
Standard Bank Limbe Branch Manager, Dyson Mmina added that they are encouraged by the positive impact of the school feeding programme, as it has helped to reduce absenteeism and improved attendance of classes by students over the years.
“The school feeding programme has had many benefits such as ensuring children have energy and increased concentration in class, which has reduced absenteeism from school with increased enrollment, and access to nutrition for some that barely eat well at home,” said the branch manager.”
In his vote of thanks, Umberto Bosco — Mary’s Meals head of programmes, pleaded for more support from other well-wishers to help feeding children in primary schools across the country.
“As Mary’s Meals, we commend Standard Bank for this important donation as it will go a long way to feed almost 50 learners for the whole school year.
“Our organization is feeding more than 1 million children in the country — it’s a big number, therefore, we need support from the corporate world to help us feed them all,” Bosco said.
Mary’s Meals is an international organization which was born in 2002 when founder, Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow visited Malawi during a famine and met a mother dying from AIDS.
What touched MacFarlane-Barrow to found this charity was the response from the mother’s eldest son Edward when he had asked him what his dreams were in life: “I want to have enough food to eat and to go to school one day.”
From then on, the charity hold on to the belief that a steady supply of food in school is changing the story for young people who might otherwise be working or begging for their next meal or too worried about hunger to engage in lessons. which started operating in Malawi in 2002 when the founder came across a child who indicated lack of food as the reason why he skipped classes.
As of 2022, Mary’s Meals feeds 30% of over 1 million Malawian learner children in over 1,045 primary schools as of September last year as the charity reached a milestone of serving more than 2 million children in 19 countries. The non-profit organization initially aimed at feeding around 200 children in two Malawian schools in 2002.
Other countries it reaches out to include Zambia, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Liberia Ethiopia, Uganda, South Sudan, Niger, Madagascar, Benin as well as Haiti, India, Syria, Lebanon,, Thailand, Myanmar, Ecuador and Romania.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :