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Ergebnisse 2021

Side Event

Forging a Global Coalition for healthy schoolchildren

Friday 25 June 2021 – 12:00 – 13:30 (CET)


In early 2020, school feeding programmes delivered more meals daily than ever before, to 388 mil-lion children, or one out of every two primary school children worldwide.  This historic progress was the culmination of a decade of action by governments and their partners. However, there was still work to be done. Even at the record numbers of children reached in early 2020, 73 million of the most vulnerable girls and boys in 60 lower-income and low-income countries still had no access to school meals.

The COVID-19 pandemic brought this decade of progress to a sudden halt. In April 2020, during the height of the crisis, almost all countries closed their schools, leaving 370 million school children without access to the one meal a day they could rely on.

Re-establishing school meals programmes and meeting the needs of those left behind has now be-come an urgent priority. Firm action is required to ensure that children will be able to return to school and get the support they need to recover from the multiple consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In order to ensure that every child has the opportunity to grow, learn and thrive, a group of member states is forming an international Schools Meals Coalition. This coalition will help to address the COVID-19 pandemic by bringing together governments, United Nations agencies, civil society, the private sector and academia to drive actions that can urgently re-establish, improve and scale-up school meals programs in low, middle, and high income countries around the world.

The goal of the coalition is that every child has the opportunity to receive a healthy meal every day in school by 2030. The aim is to improve the quality of school meals and strengthen school meal systems globally, in a manner which is tailored to local contexts and which promotes the sharing of international best practice.

Germany has been a key partner in the establishment of the coalition and is leading an initiative to foster exchange among countries: The peer-to-peer network, which aims at strengthening knowledge and implementation through sharing lessons learned. Through this exchange policy makers and implementers can learn from each other about how to address malnutrition in schools, take into account sustainability in all its dimensions, improve the linkages between education, agriculture, health and nutrition and support integrated programmes and policies.

This session will present the upcoming global school meals coalition and the peer-to-peer network, providing an opportunity to jointly shape its activities and ways of working.


Moderator: Nancy Aburto, Deputy Director, Food and Nutrition Division (FAO)

  • 12:00: Welcome and objectives of the side event - Nancy Aburto, Deputy Director, Food and Nutrition Division (FAO)
  • 12:05: Presentation of the Global School Meals Coalition
    • H.E. Celine Jurgensen, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations in Rome – Overview of the coalition
    • Professor Donald A.P. Bundy, Director of the Research Consortium for School Health and Nutrition, LSHTM
    • Q&A
  • 12:30: Presentation of the peer-to-peer network concept and objectives
    • Lorenz Franken, Director General for Consumer Health Protection, Food and Nutrition, Product Safety, Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Germany
  • 12:45: Panel: Building a peer-to-peer network, our needs and our offer
    Moderator: Anke Niederhaus, Head of Unit for Sustainable Nutrition and Reduction of Food Waste, Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Germany
    • expectations and experiences with collaboration:
      • Arlene Mitchell, Global Child Nutrition Foundation
      • Daniel Balaban – Center of Excellence Against Hunger
      • Dr. Lakmini Magodaratne, Deputy Director, Nutrition Division, Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka
      • Lic. Dalila Pinel, Director School Feeding Programme, Honduras
      • Muyunda Mukela, National School Feeding Programme, Namibia
    • Discussion / Q&A (10 min.)
  • 13:25: Closing Remarks, Carmen Burbano, Director of the School Feeding Division (WFP)

Event is facilitated as a “Zoom” meeting in English with French, Portuguese and Spanish interpretation provided.