20 January 2004 Tuesday
27 Ziqa'ad 1424

'Tawana Pakistan working in 650 girl schools'

ISLAMABAD, Jan 19: Tawana Pakistan Programme is successfully working in about 650 schools to improve educational as well as nutritional status of girls in poverty-ridden areas.

The project aims at providing about 0.5 million girls access to education in about 5,300 primary schools in poverty-ridden districts, an official of the education ministry said.

However, the provision of supplies has been completed in 2,300 primary schools/communities, he said. The project launched with Rs3.6 billion is being implemented through Baitul Mal and non-governmental/community organizations, using public-private participation model.

The project is being implemented in 29 poor districts throughout the country, including the Northern Areas and Azad Kashmir, covering over 500,000 girls of 5-12 years of age in about 5,300 government prim-ary schools.

Moreover, newly-recruited 5,000 local community organizers (one for each school) are being trained by Aga Khan University besides provincial team partners for technical assistance.

The aim of the project is to improve nutritional/health status of school-age girls, but it will also increase enrolment and sustain attendance to reduce the drop-out rate.

The programme is creating awareness in the community for better healthy living through health and nutrition education. One meal in a day is provided for 260 days a year, deworming medicines are administered to children biannually and micronutrients are given to girls twice a week. The committees set up in the selected 29 districts oversee implementation of nutrition programme, involving representatives of district governments. - APP