Updated Mar 07, 2020

Mozambique School Lunch Initiative

https://www.mozambiqueschoollunchinitiative.org/

Cara Myers

Send Message

The Mozambique School Lunch Initiative improves child nutrition and education by building home-grown school lunch programs in rural Mozambique, developing local farmer supply chains to create more cost-effective and sustainable programs.

While child malnutrition is a complex problem, MSLI focuses on school feeding because it has the additional benefit of increasing school participation and learning. By providing daily school meals, MSLI creates a strong incentive for children to go to school regularly, which helps them learn more. For disadvantaged students, this creates the opportunity for them to access education, in addition...
SEE ALL
While child malnutrition is a complex problem, MSLI focuses on school feeding because it has the additional benefit of increasing school participation and learning. By providing daily school meals, MSLI creates a strong incentive for children to go to school regularly, which helps them learn more. For disadvantaged students, this creates the opportunity for them to access education, in addition of better nutrition. Additionally, school meals are one of the most feasible interventions that makes an impact on child nutrition and learning. Using the school as our point of delivery allows us to reach many children in a cost-effective manner. We are also able to implement other complimentary solutions, like annual deworming, iron supplementation, and hygiene programs through the schools, increasing the nutritional uptake of the school meals. The school also creates a point of aggregation for the local farmers, which helps us organize them in groups, facilitate training, and provide access to improved inputs. Procuring locally for the school lunch program also serves as a source of structured demand in the community, which creates a strong rural stimulus for agricultural development and some of the root causes of child malnutrition.
SEE LESS
Proof of Concept- we have been operating at a pilot stage for two and a half years (since May 2016) and are currently looking to expand to prove the replicability of our model.

Focus Areas:

Nutrition, Agriculture and Basic Education

Nutrition, Agriculture and Basic EducationSEE LESS

Implemented In:

Mozambique

MozambiqueSEE LESS

1,700
Lives Impacted to Date
1
Country Implemented In
1,300
Customers
15
Employees
$350,000
Funds Raised to Date

Problem

The Mozambique School Lunch Initiative addresses the intertwined problems of child malnutrition and poor school participation. In Mozambique, almost half of children are chronically malnourished. When children grow up hungry, not only does this take a physical toll, it also affects their ability to participate in school. In Mozambique, 60 percent of children drop out of school by grade 5 and many more struggle with regular attendance (up to 60 percent truancy rates) due to hunger.

}

Solution

The Mozambique School Lunch Initiative (MSLI) invests in community-owned school lunch programs, providing nutritious meals and stimulating local agricultural development. Our program invests in training and improved inputs (like seeds and small-scale irrigation equipment) for local farmers to increase their production. This creates a local supply chain that can support the school lunch program's needs while also benefiting farmers and tackling the root challenges of hunger and malnutrition.

Target Beneficiaries

MSLI targets rural communities in Mozambique, serving primary school children who typically come from poor, often food-insecure families. According to the World Bank, 80 percent of the population of Mozambique cannot afford an adequate diet and more than 63 percent of the population lives in extreme poverty, on less than $1.90 per day. MSLI collaborates with the District government to identify and prioritize communities with the highest rates of poverty, child malnutrition, and school dropouts.

Mission and Vision

The Mozambique School Lunch Initiative (MSLI) builds “home-grown” school lunch programs in Mozambique to ensure that no child has to learn on an empty stomach. Our mission is to ensure that every child has the nutrition they need to grow and learn, paving the way for a brighter future. By involving smallholder farmers and developing local supply chains, we also address the underlying causes of hunger and food insecurity in rural communities in Mozambique.

Competitive Advantage

Our idea is innovative because currently, no one else is using a community-based model to build a sustainable school lunch program in rural Mozambique. Our model uniquely leverages the school lunch program resources to stimulate development of the local agricultural base as a way to sustain the local school lunch program. Other school lunch programs typically buy food products externally (often from outside Mozambique), which does not address the root cause of food insecurity and low agricultural production. Additionally, by directly involving local farmers in solution through in-kind contributions of food crops, we are able to reduce procurement costs, allowing the same resources to reach more children. By reducing the external funding necessary per meal, our model solves a key constraint faced by other programs, such as the government’s new school feeding agenda in Mozambique, which only reached 70 primary schools (out of 19,000+) nationally in 2018 due to financial limitations.

Planned Goals and Milestones

Over the next two years, we aim to expand to 50 schools, showing that our model is scalable and has measurable impact on child nutrition. In doing so, we aim to strengthen our proof of concept and demonstrate the replicability of our model so that other players can also implement in the future. Core to our growth plan is increasing investment in local farmer groups, addressing the key bottlenecks that constrain agricultural production and searching for additional market opportunities.
Funding Goal250,000
Projected Cumulative Lives Impacted2,000

The Team Behind the Innovation

The Mozambique School Lunch Initiative is led by co-founders Roberto Mutisse (Mozambique) and Cara Myers (United States) who met in 2013 while working for Samaritan's Purse in Mozambique. Roberto has deep understanding of the local context, having grown up in the communities where we work and becoming a professor at the university in Chokwe, Mozambique. Cara has a masters from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and has worked for other organizations in Mozambique including the World Bank.

EXECUTIVE TEAM INCLUDES WOMEN

Milestone

Oct 2019
Recognition ReceivedPENDING
TYPEGrant
FOCUS AREAS
Nutrition and Education
Implemented InMozambique
ORGANIZATIONGuidestar
Mar 2019
Recognition ReceivedPENDING
Sep 2016
Lives Impacted
650
May 2016
Created
Date Unknown
New Country Implemented In
Mozambique

Supporting Materials

MSLI-January-2019-Newsletter.pdf
MSLI-January-2020-Newsletter-final-orientation-null.pdf
MSLI-Newsletter-August-2019-orientation-null.pdf