PAHO/WHO and CARPHA host stakeholder meet in St Vincent

By Caribbean Medical News Staff
Following initial consultations in November 2012, the Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment and the Ministry of Education have jointly developed an overall policy framework on healthy diets and nutrition in schools according to Government sources in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
The framework outlined the strategic approach to the improvement of nutrition in schools as well as mechanism to monitor, implement and establish mechanisms that ensure good nutrition in the school setting.
The meeting was planned with the technical and financial support of the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) and the World Health Organisation (WHO), along with the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA). The one day stakeholder consultation on the finalization of the National School Nutrition Policy and Plan of Action came off late last month.
The objectives (according to Government sources) included:

1. To consult school head teachers, principals and other stakeholders on the objectives, core policy areas and implementation strategies for the draft national school nutrition policy.

2. To sensitise head teachers, school principals and other stakeholders on the national and Global agenda for improving the nutrition of school children and promoting healthy eating in schools, viz:
o National policy and plan of action on nutrition in childhood
o Draft nutrition standards of the national school feeding (lunch) program
o Recommendations on marketing of food and non-alcoholic beverages to children
o Plan of action on the prevention of obesity in children and adolescents

3. To prepare a revised draft of the national school nutrition policy ensuring that it is in line with the global agenda for improving the nutrition of school children and promoting healthy eating in schools.

4. To incorporate the school nutrition policy actions into the national policy and plan of action on nutrition in childhood.
Over one hundred stakeholders from the education, health, government and NGO sectors in St. Vincent and the Grenadines participated in this consultation which was organized by PAHO/WHO, CARPHA and organized by the Ministry of Health.

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