A joint effort by the Department of Basic Education (DBE) and the Tiger Brands Foundation (TBF) in recognising the dedication of School Management Teams and best practices in school feeding, has earned Ratanda Primary School, in the Gauteng Province, a state-of-the art kitchen to ensure that quality meals are served to its learners.
On 04 April 2019, Basic Education Minister, Mrs Angie Motshekga, joined by the TBF Chairperson, Ambassador Sheila Sisulu, officially unveiled the new kitchen at the school to sustain best practice. As part of the hand-over ceremony, Minister Motshekga also handed out accredited certificates to Volunteer Food Handlers drawn from 13 schools in Alexandra, in the Gauteng Province, to acknowledge their sterling contribution towards education. The DBE and the TBF entered into a partnership during 2011 to recognise excellence and best practices in schools, and to initiate the in-school breakfast programme. Currently, more than 93 schools with 69,651 learners in various schools across provinces are benefitting from the programme.
In her address, Minister Motshekga said that the partnership will have a positive impact in improving learning outcomes: “The programme supplies our learners with one of the most important and nutritious meals of the day to support their school performance and improve their health. We further encourage proper food handling practices to minimise the risk and the contraction of non-communicable diseases”. The Minister also applauded the school principal and educators, as the school epitomises a well-managed school.
Ambassador Sisulu acknowledged the DBE for having granted the TBF an opportunity to give back to the Heidelberg community, adding that, “the Foundation recognises the importance of establishing a good nutritional infrastructure to help schools provide healthy and hygienic meals”. She further emphasised that the Foundation has also undertaken infrastructure development where necessary, either by upgrading existing facilities or providing new kitchens in the form of customised shipping containers or brick and mortar structures.