Free school meals for vulnerable children

Free lunch for vulnerable students
Photo Credit: Katerina Holmes, pexels

100 schools in Brabant have signed up for free school meals for vulnerable pupils. This is what initiators  the Red Cross and Youth Education Fund reported Friday to Omroep Brabant. It concerns pupils in primary and secondary education. The initiative should ensure that fewer students sit in class hungry.

Schools could sign up for the programme for about two months. Some of the schools have also started handing out meals or providing grocery cards.

For privacy reasons, the organsations do not want to say exactly which schools are involved. In the Netherlands, a total of 1302 schools have signed up. Most of the participating schools are from South Holland (387) and North Holland (238).

Low income or special education

Schools, where 30 per cent or more of the students come from low-income families, can use the school meals. Special education students are also eligible. A total of 300,000 students can be helped.

Participating schools can choose between “meal at school” and “meal at home. Under the first option, the school receives €9 per pupil per week. Via the meal-at-home option, parents of pupils who need it most can receive shopping cards worth €11 per child per week.

The Netherlands has a total of around eight thousand schools in primary, secondary, and special education. So with the 1302 schools that have signed up, this means that one in six schools in the Netherlands now provides meals because students there regularly go to school with empty stomachs, according to the Red Cross.

Source: Omroep Brabant

Translation: Chaitali Sengupta. She also gives online INBURGERING classes.

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