ABCD is funding a breakfast program at every primary school in Marangu West and so far we have funded a new kitchen at 3 schools, complete with energy-efficient government-approved stoves. Our latest just completed kitchen is at Kitowo/Napaku Primary School.
Invariably we receive reports from the Head Teachers that attendance and academic performance have improved since the breakfast programs started. Learning improves when the children are fed a good breakfast of porridge and ground nuts.
Our main challenge with the new kitchens seems to be the training of the local cooks in the proper use of the stoves. Although the company which installs the stoves does provide a training session, we think we will supplement it with signage on the walls of the kitchens. The signage would remind the cooks that the only time the stove doors should be open is when wood is put inside. With closed doors, 3 or 4 small pieces of firewood will provide ample heat and last a long time reducing the amount of wood taken from the forest.
Whenever we visit schools during breakfast we truly enjoy seeing the children enjoying their chakula (food).