Mary’s Meals is now feeding 1,257,278 children every school day

We have some amazing news. We are now reaching 1,257,278 of the world’s poorest children with nutritious daily school meals!

Thanks to the continued generosity of our supporters around the world, we’re now providing life-changing meals to 1,257,278 of the world’s poorest children.

Mary’s Meals works alongside impoverished communities across four continents to set up community-run school feeding programmes, encouraging children – who may otherwise be forced to work, beg or forage for food – to come to school and receive a nutritious meal, which helps them to concentrate on their studies.

We began by feeding just 200 children in Malawi in 2002, but have since grown into a global movement providing meals to more than 1.2 million children in 15 countries across Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean every school day. The most recent expansions to our school feeding programme, in the first few months of 2018, have reached an additional 20,822 vulnerable children at 43 new schools in Zambia and Ethiopia.

Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, our founder and chief executive, says: “Today, we share the wonderful news that we are now reaching 1,257,278 children with Mary’s Meals. This beautiful work of ours is only possible thanks to the love and dedication of our supporters and volunteers around the world who give their time, money, skills and prayer to help children find hope in the classroom.

“With 61 million children still out of school and many more too hungry to concentrate on their lessons, our work is only just beginning. Together, our journey continues – one step at a time, one meal at a time, one child at a time.”

Mary’s Meals is owned and run by local communities, including more than 80,000 volunteers in Malawi alone, who give up their time to cook and serve the food for their children.

Robert Zulu is a volunteer cook at Uyoba Primary School, one of 34 schools in Zambia that recently began serving Mary’s Meals for the first time.

He says: “I help because I am a parent and my children will start school next year. Our children are always full, they think the porridge is tasty. The children come to school eagerly with their cups in their hands. School is important because when they are educated they will have knowledge and will become better in the future.”

Our school feeding programme offers children the hope of a life free from hunger. By providing a daily meal in a place of education, chronically poor children are attracted into the classroom where they can gain a basic education which can, in future, provide an escape route from poverty.

The average global cost to feed a child with Mary’s Meals for a whole school year is just £13.90 / $19.50 / €15.60.