How were communies involved?
Kenya’s arid areas have relied on food aid for decades. The communies with high poverty levels have not had enough say in the type of assistance they receive. Encouraging community ownership and parcipaon was a key part of the pilot and was achieved through two main mechanisms.
School meals programme commiees (SMPC) were elected.
Each commiee had eight members: the head teacher, school meals programme teacher and two other teachers, and four parents. The SMPC managed the food procurement and school meals bank account, and oversaw the use of the funds and food. Each commiee was chaired by a parent member who was also signatory to the account. In total, 392 parents were involved in the pilot.
A helpline to report issues or get informaon.
Posters were hung at the schools, children took leaets home, and communies were informed about the hotline through
(community meengs). The hotline was used by traders, parents, teachers, and concerned community members.
Who were the main partners and donors?
The Ministry of Educaon, Science and Technology (MOEST); Agricultural Market Development Trust Kenya (AGMARK); bank managers, primary schools, school children and their parents in Isiolo County were the main partners. The Department of Trade, Foreign Aairs and Development (Canada) funded the iniave.
How was the approach validated?
The strategy and early results of the pilot were presented to stakeholders during a validaon meeng in Nairobi. At the eld level, during preparatory meengs for Term 1 2014, the results of the previous term were reviewed with MOEST county/sub
county teams and parents). WFP sta from in the country oce, sub
oces, and regional oce were briefed on the results and lessons learned through a learning event broadcast through a web
based conferencing facility (Webex).
What were the success factors?
Cash transfers can work for school meals even in areas where there is limited or no local producon and very limited capacity at the school level. Crical success factors include a strong collaboraon between WFP and MOEST, the building of condence and capacity of parents to take it on, and building capacity of local traders to parcipate in the new market. Increased parental involvement in children’s educaon is also important for successful educaonal results.
What were the challenges?
Parents who are illiterate are less likely to be elected to the SMPCs. Given that illiteracy disproporonately aects women, this makes it more dicult for them to parcipate. In addion, local producon of grains is limited in arid areas and traders are not accustomed to structured markets. WFP’s Purchase for Progress (P4P) programme is working with local grain traders to prepare them for the new school meals market. Quality issues connue to be a challenge as some traders do not fumigate the maize and beans before delivering to schools.
What is the impact so far?
For over 30 years, primary schools in the arid lands have received in
kind food aid. Parents did not parcipate nor did they inuence what their children ate at school. They had lile informaon about the programme, and no clear mechanism for reporng problems. The TCTS pilot is helping to idenfy the best way to transion the schools into the naonal HGSMP. With the new approach, parents are involved in receipt and management of funds, they have a say in what their children eat for lunch at school and a structured way to lodge complaints. Local food suppliers and Kenyan producers benet and new businesses have been established in remote areas.
What was the meframe?
WFP’s support for the expansion of the Government
led and community
owned home grown school meals programme included the development of a strategy (April
September 2013), a ‘transional cash to schools’ pilot (May
December 2014), and hands
on learning. The market study was done in 2012, and preparaons began in January 2013. From start to nish, the iniave took about 18 months.
A school cook prepares lunch for the students.
A tender opening with local traders, parents and teach-ers.