Survey data during covid (UNICEF 2020), revealed an increase in food insecurity among low-income homes, which probably means irregular meals. Anthropological data (Gayle, 2019) indicates a relationship between hunger, anger and violent behaviour, especially in boys. Data from the Ministry of National Security suggest a high likelihood of gang recruitment and violence in the 10-13 age group especially of boys in certain inner-city areas.
We worked with six (6) inner-city primary schools, located where gang violence is the main cause of death. The intervention programme consisted of 250 Grades 5 & 6 students; the likelihood of being recruited into local gangs in these areas is high at this age. The MNS involved nutrition experts of JINN in adjusting their menus and conducting a nutritional screening of students.
The MOA provided the gateway for the integration of local food products into menus and provided fresh fruits from the agricultural glut.
Four different government ministries were impacted by this project and through networking, nutrition practitioners can now be integrated into the work of these and other sectors besides health and education.
JINN’s mission integrates the concept of collaboration and the companies and schools become an integral part of the roll out methodology. The materials we use are all locally produced and highlight the inclusion of local food products.
There will be a collaborative effort between schools, parents and other stakeholders to sustain the gains irrespective of changes in administration, teaching staff and community persons.