Choithrams spotlights UN WFP’sSchool Feeding programme with “What’s for Lunch?” campaign

WFP’s School Feeding programmekeepsmillions of children in school

5.3million mealsdonated since the start of the partnership in 2015

Dubai, 1 September 2021:Dubai’s popular community supermarket brand Choithrams reveals “What’s for Lunch?” awareness and fundraising campaign to supportthe UN World Food Programme’s school feeding programmes in the Middle East region. WFP, the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, and Choithrams mark the seventh year of their strategic partnershipthat providesmeals to school children in need, ensuring continuity of education.For many of these children, the meal they receive at school is the only meal they get for the day.

Hussien, 6 years old in the classroom with his classmates after receiving their daily share of WFP’s nutritious snacks at WFP supported school in Zinjibar, Abyan, Yemen WFP’s school feeding programme supports 1.55 million children in schools across Yemen with daily nutritious snacks. The programme helps increase enrolment in school, boosts daily attendance and encourages children to remain in school. WFP targets areas where enrolment in school is low, the area has adversely affected by conflict and where food security indicators are also low. WFP provides fortified date bars and/or high energy biscuits as a midday snack to children in school so that they are able to continue concentrating in school. For many children this snack represents a core nutrition boost to their diet. An estimated 2 million children in Yemen are out of school and over 1,800 schools have been directly affected by the conflict. One in five schools across the country cannot be used because they have either been destroyed or damaged, or are sheltering displaced families, or being used for military purposes.

During the campaign from 1 September until 31 December 2021,Choithrams pledges to donate up to AED 4 every time a customer purchases a product from its extensive “Goodness Foods” range, marked with a special sticker, whether in-store or online. The campaign will be active in all Dubai outlets.

Commenting on the brand’s vision to spread goodness through food, L. T. Pagarani, Chairman of Choithrams said, “At the peak of the pandemic, more than 370 million children were deprived of the main meal of the day. At Choithrams, we aim to be part of the solution, and advocacy and donations to help in bringing relief to millions. Together with our generous stakeholders, our customers, partners and staff, we will continue supporting the school feeding programmes administered by United Nations World Food Programme to keep children in school.” According to WFP, the global average cost of one nutritious meal for a child in school is about AED 1, and the average cost of one year of school meals is about AED 200.

As part of the #ZeroHungerwithGoodness 4 months campaign, “What’s for Lunch?” is the question that will be featured on the related communications tools in all Choithrams outlets to trigger a conversation on nutritious and balanced meals and to help increase customers’ and followers’ awareness.

Througha series of informative videos curated by experts, “What’s for Lunch?” willhelp raise awareness on the importance and positive impact of WFP school feeding programmes on vulnerable children. It will also inform and inspire viewers about effective lunch ideas. The episodes will be presented at 12 noon across 12 weeks on Choithrams social media platforms, including Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Discussions will be around smart lunch habits, nutrition, exclusive recipes and meal planning strategies.

“Due to an increasing number of natural disasters, conflicts and the devastating effects of COVID-19, the level of food insecurity is on the rise and millions of vulnerable people are suffering from hunger, especially children. Our valuable partnership with Choithrams, enables us to continue supporting some of the most vulnerable children in the region through WFP’s school feeding programmes”, said Mageed Yahia, Director of WFP office in the UAE and Representative to the GCC.

At the beginning of 2020, national school feeding programmes delivered school meals to more children than at any time in human history, making school feeding the most extensive social safety net in the world. In a post-Covid-19 world, school feeding programmes are even more of a priority investment because they help countries to build back better: creating human capital; supporting national growth, and promoting economic development.

According to the United Nations global data, more than 24 million students have dropped out of school or have no access to education due to the economic impact of Covid-19. The pandemic has highlighted the need for quality school-based health and nutrition programmes. By supporting campaigns like #ZeroHungerwithGoodness we contribute to giving access to education for every child.

#ZeroHunger remains an important purpose that Choithrams has been advocating since 2015, this year the goal is to reach5.6 million meals to needy school children in the Middle East. Funds have been allocated to WFP’s School Feeding programme in Benin, Jordan, Egypt and more recently Algeria, encouraging families most in need to send their daughters and sons to school and keep them there. For many of these children, the meal they receive at school is the only meal they get for the day, it keeps them healthy and focused in class so they can learn and play, make the best of their education, fulfil their potential as adults and participate in their country’s development as productive citizens. The collaboration between WFP and Choithrams has grown in strength year on year with widespread support from customers, partners and members of the community.

About The UN World Food Programme:

The United Nations World Food Programme is the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.  We are the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.

Follow us on Twitter  @wfp_gcc

For more information please contact

Zeina Habib, WFP/Dubai, Tel. +971 52 472 4971 zeina.habib@wfp.org

About UN WFP – Choithrams Partnership

Established in 2015, the strategic partnership between WFP and Choithrams has delivered tangible, life-changing results for many in vulnerable communities.Choithrams and WFP have collaborated as partners on a variety of Zero Hunger campaigns in supermarket locations across the United Arab Emirates.Over 5.3 million meals have been donated since the start of the partnership in 2015.For many of the schoolchildren supported by the WFP-Choithrams partnership, the meal they receive at school is the only one they’ll eat that day. That’s why the partnership works hard to increase access and availability to food for children in marginalized communities in the Middle East and beyond.To learn more, visit www.choithrams.com/zerohunger

#ZeroHunger

In 2015 the global community adopted the 17 Global Goals for Sustainable Development to improve people’s lives by 2030. Goal 2 – Zero Hunger – pledges to end hunger, achieve food security, improve nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture, and is the priority of the World Food Programme.

Every day, WFP and its partners work to bring us closer to a zerohunger world. The vision is achieved through humanitarian food assistance providing nutritious food to those in urgent need. In tandem, complementary programmes address the root causes of hunger, building the resilience of communities, so we don’t need to keep saving the same lives each year.

About Choithrams

Choithrams is a successful group with associates in diverse fields including manufacturing, distribution, commodities, retailing This rich combination brings to the group a huge fund of experience and resources. Choithrams came to UAE in 1974 and its chain of over 40 supermarkets have made it a household name in the Emirates.

Follow us on Twitter at @choithramsuaeor check our website:   www.choithrams.com/en/

For more info please contact:

ChoithramsWorld Food Programme  
Kirti Malhotra Cell: +97155 3885699 Email:kmalhotra@choithrams.com  Zeina Habib Cell: +971 52 4724971 Email:zeina.habib@wfp.org   Amina Zoubairi Cell: +971 50 453 8325 Email: amina.zoubairi@wfp.org


Picture

Caption: WFP provides daily nutritious snacks – either date bars or high energy biscuits – to 1.55 million school children. The programme focuses on areas that have been hard hit by conflict, leading to low levels of school attendance and poor food security.Photo credit: WFP/Mohammed Sami

Caption: WFP provides fortified snacks, fresh meals and assistance through electronic vouchers to more than 348,000 students in Syria. This food is a key step towards helping students to improve their health and nutrition and motivates families to send their children to school. The fresh school meals programme in Aleppo employs vulnerable women and provides them with training and an income so they can support their families and become financially independent. Photo credit: WFP/Hussam Al Saleh