SAN DIEGO—Project Concern International (PCI) launched the expansion of its Tanzania programming this month, thanks to a new two-year award from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
As part of USDA’s Local Regional Procurement initiative, PCI will lead one of three global awards dedicated to supporting school feeding through the procurement and distribution of locally grown food. The Chakula Chetu project, which means “Our Food” in Swahili, will provide daily school meals to 16,135 students in 16 schools located in Butiama District in the Mara region of Tanzania. The project will also build a network of local government officials, market actors, schools, parents, farmers, and communities to take over leadership and management of school meal programming.
“PCI has been a USDA McGovern-Dole Food for Education program implementer globally for nearly two decades, and a partner in Tanzania since 2010. We are thrilled to expand our partnership to strengthen local agricultural production and markets to support school feeding,” said Carrie Hessler-Radelet, President & CEO of PCI.
In addition to the students that will benefit from locally grown, healthy school meals, Chakula Chetu will support farmer groups, improve agricultural production, and increase access to local markets. Over the next two years, Chakula Chetu is expected to reach 16,135 students, 655 farmers, 189 teachers, 65 Government of Tanzania staff, and 48 cooks and guards.
PCI began operations in Tanzania in 2008 with a water and sanitation improvement project funded by the Starbucks Foundation, and has since expanded and deepened its presence through its USDA-funded Food for Education (FFE) program. That project is improving literacy outcomes and increasing enrollment and attendance of pre- and primary school children in the Mara region. PCI is currently implementing its third phase of FFE programming in 231 primary schools, reaching over 141,000 students each day.
About PCI: PCI is a global development organization dedicated to empowering families and communities to enhance health, end hunger and overcome hardship. Founded in 1961, PCI impacted the lives of nearly 12 million people in 2017 alone through programs in 16 countries spanning Asia, Africa, and the Americas. For more information, visit www.pciglobal.org.