We have always been passionate about feeding here at Smile International, so much so that it’s our acronym for our main programmes, FEED - Feeding, Educating, Empowering and Developing. Being able to put food on the table and in the mouths of people who are desperately hungry has always been a huge part of who we are. We feed many children and adults each school day and the results speak for themselves. The difference a meal makes is incredible and when you don’t know when your next meal will be, life is just that much more challenging.

So many people are just desperate for a continuous supply of food and access to clean water. We’ve seen first-hand children and parents malnourished and the effects that it has on people and their lives, so we are desperate to help as many people as we can, by providing food and water. We’ve seen child poverty increase when food is not readily available as households prioritise food acquisition and invest little in children’s education and health. Child protection issues increase during periods of high food insecurity, as care is also compromised due to caregiver’s going out in search of food, leaving children alone or in the care of other children. Children are also at risk of being withdrawn from school as they assist the parents in search for food, therefore having a huge impact on their education and future.

For those children who attend school, apart from the effect of constant hunger on their health and comfort, malnourished children are easily distracted and usually have problems concentrating on their lessons, affecting a child’s ability to learn and achieve. Sadly, the list goes on.

This is where Smile provides much needed support through our Feeding programme, helping those we can through regular food supplies. We operate a number of feeding programmes in schools in Africa. We provide a beneficial meal which enables children to focus on their lessons and so makes them more attentive during their time at school. No child should go hungry nor grow up searching for food. We always aim to provide the staple ingredients that are native to each country that provide fulfilling meals for all the family. Food helps people and especially children keep focussed, it helps people to grow, develop, it helps with a person’s disposition and all-round wellbeing. Food is imperative in enabling people to live and gives them the nutrients that they need in order to function well.

When food is available at school a child’s performance increases significantly; attendance at school stabilises, they are more able to focus, concentrate harder and achieve more. This is what we want to see more of! Providing meals for the children is also a huge relief for the families as they know that not only are they receiving an education but are being fed too.

We really need your help to see more people receiving food. It sounds an easy thing to do, just sending money, but what you must know is just how vitally important it is. It’s not just giving money to charity, but it’s what that money achieves that’s life changing. Seeing the faces of young children light up when they realise the meal in front of them is all for them is both heart-warming and heart-breaking at the same time. To see a mother’s relief when she receives a month’s worth of staple food supplies for her family and know that this is the answer to her innermost prayers is indescribable. To witness a widow, break down in front of you, full of gratitude for supplying food in her darkest times, makes you realise the significance of feeding the world’s most vulnerable. 

If you would like to help then please consider donating today.

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