Georgetown, Guyana – (May 4, 2018) First Lady, Mrs. Sandra Granger, today, received a courtesy call from Representative of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations, Mr. Reuben Robertson, to advance discussions aimed at lobbying her support for food and nutrition security in Guyana, particularly the school feeding programme. The meeting, which served as a follow-up to the FAO’s initial engagement with the First Lady, in 2016, in this endeavour, also aimed at identifying new projects designed to accomplish the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on food security. The meeting was held at the Office of the First Lady at State House.

Mr. Robertson explained that FAO’s plethora of responsibilities includes helping the Guyana Government to achieve its SDGs, which the country signed on to in 2015. “When we met with First Lady in 2016 we had a conversation concerning her support with respect to championing the cause for improving food and nutrition security, reducing poverty and fighting hunger in Guyana so that by 2030 we can zero all of these problems that are facing the country,” he said.

The FAO Representative also said that one of the primary initiatives the FAO team is placing its focus on is the school feeding programme. “We took her [the First Lady] and a team – from government ministers and senior officials – to Brazil in late 2017 to look at some of the initiatives of the Government of Brazil to see how school feeding can help to build rural communities through agriculture business development and, at the same time, address the issues related to food and nutrition security among children and their families. So it is in that context [that] we are here today to see how we can scale-up the [school feeding] programme and how we can work closely with [the] First Lady to be able to advance the initiative,” he said.

FAO representatives from Chile Dr. Cole Genge and Mr. Vincente Ossa along with the organisation’s local Disaster Risk Management and Climate Change Programme Coordinator, Ms. Onika Baptise, also attended the meeting.

The FAO is a specialised agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger. It’s goal is to achieve food security for all and ensure that people have regular access to enough high-quality foods so that they can lead active, healthy lives. The FAO works in over 130 countries worldwide.

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