18 June 2012 – The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) today announced a new project designed to boost food security and nutrition of women and young people in Egypt by increasing food production, education and capacity-building.
The $3 million project, financed by the Government of Italy, will establish Junior Farmer Field and Life Schools and Community Model Gardens to give women and young people the opportunity to manage their own food production enterprises, FAO said in a news release.
Through the training, participants will learn how to grow food and to raise small animals, and to improve household incomes through the sale of food products.
Training will be provided on how to produce organic fertilizers so households can avoid purchasing expensive fertilizers, as well as on food processing and preservation techniques, household budgeting, record keeping, and food marketing. Microcredit and savings opportunities, better food preparation and consumption practices, and food safety and hygiene will also be covered.
According to health surveys in Egypt, malnutrition is the root cause of over one third of sicknesses affecting children under the age of five.
To tackle this problem, nutrition education and behaviour change communication plans will be developed to promote food diversification, food hygiene, family planning, breast feeding and complementary feeding practices.
Radio dramas and spots, videos and events will also be used to promote better nutrition education. Community kitchens will offer women the chance to meet regularly and use knowledge acquired to prepare healthy meals using fruits and vegetables they produced.
FAO added that national and local government staff and community workers will be trained in food production and nutrition so that they become familiar with nutrition and health issues, approaches to nutrition improvement and knowledge of household food production methods.