The Foundation For Tomorrow’s success has, from the beginning, been founded on collaboration, best practices, and partnership. Our growth and development have been the result of thoughtful and effective relationships both in Tanzania and the US. We are excited to announce one of our newest collaborations – a US partnership that extends all the way to Tanzania. The Foundation For Tomorrow and The Lunch Project, both Charlotte-based non-profits with a focus on Tanzania, have created a new partnership: The Feed and Learn Project.
Feeding Program – Empathy Project
Beginning in the first quarter of 2019, TFFT began serving as the on-the-ground distribution partner in and around Arusha for the Feed and Learn Project, delivering food that will feed 3,952 students at four schools served by The Lunch Project (TLP).
TLP raises awareness and funds in the greater Charlotte, North Carolina area, with a focus on an empathy program for school-aged children. For several years TLP fundraising efforts from the US have provided a once-daily meal for Tanzanian school children. TLP hires local Tanzanians for the purchasing, distribution, and preparation of these meals consisting of maize, milk, sugar, and nuts.
The value of a project such as this cannot be understated. According to a 2018 report by USAID, 16% of Tanzanian children under the age of 5 suffer from malnutrition – that’s 3.3 million children. Malnutrition not only stunts a child’s growth, but impacts their ability to learn. A study by Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health in 2018 found that poverty and malnutrition contribute to “slower cognitive development and slower gross motor skill development.” By offering a meal to students, schools attract learners to the classroom and give them the nutrition they need to grow as well as focus in the classroom.
TFFT comes to this partnership with strengths and expertise in identifying and providing scholarships to orphan and vulnerable children, while TLP focuses their work on providing community-run feeding programs that promote school attendance, as well as student well-being. The Feed and Learn Project will leverage TFFT’s on-the-ground know-how to reach TLP’s local food supply partners and schools, ensuring that school feeding programs continue and expand in 2019. In addition to providing logistical support, TFFT will provide schools served by TLP with access to bespoke teacher training provided by TFFT.
Part of the new TFFT-TLP partnership includes welcoming TLP’s Tanzanian distribution coordinator, Ernest Mmbaga, to the TFFT team. Ernest is excited about this new partnership and the additional support it will bring to the schools served by The Lunch Project. TFFT will work with Ernest while working on a district level with the Ministry of Education, individually with school leadership teams, the communities serving the feeding programs, and local vendors supplying the raw materials each and every day.
The Feed and Learn Project consists of community-run feeding programs in four Primary schools in Arusha, Tanzania. As of January 2019, the Project is operating five days per week at Lemanyata Primary School, Engorika Primary School, Olkokola Primary School, and Lengijave Primary School. There are plans to add a fifth school in the second semester of 2019. TLP’s community run feeding program model consists of purchasing local ingredients of maize, milk, sugar, and nuts and delivering those ingredients to the schools to make uji porridge for the school children, as well as the employment of local women to prepare and serve these meals.
TLP will continue to raise awareness and funds for the feeding programs through their Charlotte-area programming that create cultural awareness and respect, and connect children with their peers in Tanzania. TLP and TFFT will work together here in Charlotte to make sure resources and delivery of both our missions is met. Our shared vision of education combating vulnerability is now strengthened by the combined efforts of the TLP feeding program and TFFT’s programs on access to high quality education for the most students, with training and resourcing classrooms for teachers in Tanzania.
In forging this new partnership, TFFT will collaborate and share our best practices through our Teachers Training program. The four schools currently enrolled in the Feed and Learn Program will have tailored teachers’ training offered to their staff in the coming year. The benefit of these training sessions to the teachers and, as a direct result, to their students will be tremendous. Providing teaching techniques such as lesson planning, visual aids, and engaging teaching techniques will add new and crucial tools to the teachers’ skill set.
TFFT is excited to forge this new partnership, strengthening our efforts here in Charlotte as well as in Tanzania. We welcome the opportunity to assist TLP in their efforts, especially being able to assist in the distribution of meals to children in need of nourishment. It is our great hope that the children and schools served by the Feed and Learn Program will benefit from full stomachs, ready minds, and greater teaching skills.