Joint Civil Society Call to Action for equitable access to healthy & nutritious, sustainably sourced school meals

Monday, October 16, 2023

School meals play a critical role in children’s lives. They are an essential intervention in development and humanitarian contexts, proven to have long-lasting impacts across multiple Sustainable Development Goals and sectors, including food security, nutrition and health, education, water and sanitation, child protection, gender equality, and prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse.

They are at the juncture of the right to food, the right to health and the right to education. They also offer enormous potential for the catalysation of food systems, with nutritious, locally-grown and appropriate foods, creation of jobs and contributions towards livelihoods, among other benefits. Civil society organisations have an essential role to play in supporting school meals programmes globally through collective advocacy, technical assistance, capacity sharing and fostering partnerships.

We commend the countries who have made concrete commitments to the School Meals Coalition, and the progress made to date. Yet, much more needs to be done. Therefore, ahead of the School Meals Coalition Ministerial Meeting in Paris, we as Civil Society Organisations have come together with a Call to Action:

1. We call upon governments to expand and improve their programmes, in the following ways:
a) For governments who are not members of the School Meals Coalition to join.
b) For governments who are already members of the School Meals Coalition to make ambitious commitments.
c) For governments who are members of the School Meals Coalition and have made commitments, to ensure their national school meals programmes are adequately financed, equitable, inclusive and effectively delivered.

2. We call upon donors to increase their interest, cooperation, and financing of nutritious school meals, with a focus on the lowest-income countries and conflict- affected and fragile states/humanitarian crises.

3. We urge all governments to develop and commit to improving the quality and efficiency of school meal programmes to meet children’s nutritional requirements, especially through home-grown, climate smart, and sustainable solutions.

4. Governments and their partners must prioritise access and equity for children, ensuring that national programmes are gender responsive and prioritise access for vulnerable groups, including children with disabilities and children affected by conflict.

5. We as CSOs boldly commit to supporting National Governments. We commit to long-term strategic support to galvanise CSO collaboration
at the local, national and global levels to ensure governments make commitments, deliver on them and reach their goals.

It is our collective responsibility to ensure that every child has access to a healthy and nutritious meal at school every day.



• World Vision International with the following organisations: 

• Abraham’s Children Foundation Organisation to Develop Our Villages (ODOV)
• Action Contre la Faim
• Action Contre la Pauvreté(ACP)
• Action Education
• Action for Development(AfD)
• Afghanistan CivilSsociety Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition
• African Children and Youth Development Network (ACYDN)
• African Youth Peer Review Committee
• Albanian Coalition for Education (ACE)
• Arise From Ashes (AFA)
• Association pour la Défense des Droits Humains et le Développement Familial (ADDHF-DUKUNDANE)
• Campaña Argentina por
el Derecho a la Educacion
• Canadian Feed the Children
• Catholic Relief Services - USCCB
• Center for Peace and Development Effectiveness
• Centre for Health Science and Law (CHSL)
• Centro de Aprendizagem e Capacitação da Sociedade Civil (CESC)
• Children Believe
• Citizens Health Education and Development Initiative (CHEDI)
• Civil Society Education Partnership (CSEP) Timor Leste
• Coalition Nationale Pour
Education (CONAMEPT)
• Collectif des Ligues et Associations des Droits de l’Homme au Rwanda (CLADHO)
• Concern Worlwide
• Consumers Protection Association
• Counterpart International
• CRCA/ECPAT Albania
• Education Coalition Georgia
• Education Coalition of Zimbabwe (ECOZI)
• Education Coalition Togo
• Education For All Coalition Sierra Leone
• Education For All Somalia Coalition (EFASOM)
• Egyptian Union for Educational Policies and Research
• Elimu Yetu Coalition
• Federation of Farmer Associations Promoting Family Agricultural Enterprise in Cambodia (FAEC) Cambodia
• Fida International
• Finn Church Aid (FCA)
• Fondation Paul Gérin- Lajoie
• Food Bank Botswana
• Foundation for Environmental Watch
• Foundation for Rural Development (FRD) Pakistan
• Franec Eduaction Coalition
• Fundacion Baylor Colombia
• Fundación Educadora Infantil Carla Cristina
• Fundación Hogar Integral
• Global Alliance for a Healthy Society (GAHSO)
• Global Health Advocacy Incubator
• Global Peace and Development Organization
• Halley Movement Coalition
• HarvestPlus
• Hikma Foundation for Human Development
• IDAY Liberia Coalition
• Int Scaling Up Nutrition Civil Society Network
• International Council of Women
• International Institute of Rural Reconstruction
• International Partliamentary Network for Education (IPNEd)
• Islamic Relief USA
• Japan NGO Network for Education (JNNE)
• JK Arms Charity Foundation
• Jonchi Humanitarian Foundation
• La Plateforme de la Société Civile HINA
• Love Gate Organisation
• Maple Leaf Early Years Foundation
• Mary’s Meals International
• Movimento de Educação Para Todos
• My Body My Body
• Nakyenyi Diary Farm
• Nareto Latia Indigenous Peoples’ Program
• National Education Association (NEA)
• Network of Advocacy for Youth Empowerment Sierra Leone (NAYE)
• Pamoja Education
• Participatory Livelihood Improvement Ecology And Sanitation (PALES)
• Peace Action Society Organization for Somalia PASOS
• Personal Development Initiative Africa (PDIA)
• Plan International
• Plateforme Société Civile SUN Senegal
• ProVeg UK
• Puntland Network On Education for All (PUNTNEFA)
• Regional Advisory Information and Network Systems (RAINS)
• Réseau de la Société Civile Pour la Nutrition au Burkina Faso (RESONUT)
• Right to Education Initiative
• Ripples Foundation USA
• Save the Children
• Scaling up Nutrition Civil Society Youth Network Uganda
• SDG 2 Advocacy Hub
• Sierra Leone Alliance Against Hunger and Malnutrition
• Sociedad Católica San José
• Sociedad Civil Por La Niñez y la Adolescencia (NiñezYA)
• Society for Protection of African Health and Environment (SPAHE)
• SUN Civil Society Alliance of Liberia (SUNCSAL)
• Tamdeen Youth Foundation
• Terri Foundation
• The Breakfast Chat Mentorship program
• The Leprosy Mission
• The Young Mentorship Community Program CBO
• Transparency Reliance to Unify Equal Life
• War Child UK
• Windle Trust International
• Women Against Violence And Exploitation Foundation (WAVE)
• Wontta Rural Development Association


Visit the published  Joint Civil Society CALL TO ACTION for equitable access to healthy & nutritious, sustainably sourced school meals  at the School Meals Coalition.