School canteen: a factor of success

Reducing school absenteeism and improving student concentration in the classroom are crucial challenges for the education system. Where the absenteeism rate is high, it becomes essential to implement effective strategies in order to ensure the regular presence of students and to optimize their engagement in learning. How can we reduce school absenteeism where it is highest? How can you make students more focused during class and thus improve their exam results?

The school canteen: a convincing solution

cantine scolaire

In the north of Togo, the village of Anima is located in a mountainous area, and is therefore difficult to access. Every day, students travel an average of twenty kilometers to get to school. The latter does not have a water point or school canteen. By noon, most of the children, having not eaten or drunk anything since morning, they are already unable to attend school.

We therefore set up a school canteen to distribute free daily meals to public school students.

The school canteen has many advantages. In particular, it contributes to reducing inequalities by providing equitable access to nutritious meals for all students, regardless of their economic or social situation. It ensures that all children have the opportunity to benefit from a healthy diet and an environment that is conducive to their development. Thus, it promotes inclusion and equal opportunities. The school canteen also plays a key role in the food education of students. It allows them to discover new foods, develop their palates and adopt healthy eating habits. By exposing children to a variety of nutritious foods, the school canteen promotes a balanced diet and encourages them to make healthy food choices throughout their lives.

School canteen: jobs for local artisans

At LIFE, we are committed to making a positive and lasting impact on the communities we serve. The construction of the refectory where the children eat meals and the solidarity vegetable garden gave employment to local artisans. They were thus able to improve their incomes and provide for their families. It was important for LIFE to participate in the economic life of the village. The establishment of a vegetable garden next to the primary school makes it possible to supply the school canteen. The garden is now operational and the teachers and parents of students are taking care of it. The first harvests have begun. The canteen benefited from spinach, lettuce and beets. Some vegetables were even able to be sold. The money collected will be used to improve school infrastructure.

cantine scolaire

Let's fight against school absenteeism

These meals are distributed to students every day. We found that the student attendance rate is much higher compared to previous years. When the refectory fills up, the classrooms fill up too! The benefits of this school canteen project are therefore twofold: it is a way to fight against malnutrition in addition to fighting against school absenteeism. Children are more attentive in class and their results at the end of the school year are a testament to this! According to the Director of Anima Primary School, since the passage of LIFE, the success rate in the CFPD exams is 100%! The CFPD is the First Degree Certificate, an essential diploma in Togo to be able to enter middle school. The school never reached this pass rate: it was 38% last year. The impact of a school canteen is huge on school performance. No more doubt: improving the quality of education necessarily involves improving the nutrition of children.

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