Fiona McCaffrey Jones, Truagh Spirit Social Enterprise Manager, welcomes the announcement by Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys expanding the Hot School Meals Programme to all schools.
Our Social Enterprise has been providing hot school meals since 2015 and we currently supply six national schools in Truagh and the north Monaghan area with breakfast and hot lunches. Our meals are nutritionally balanced and freshly prepared each day from locally produced ingredients. We work closely with the schools to ensure no food comes back and to sneak as many vegetables as possible into the menus without the kids knowing! This ensures there is little waste, the service is sustainable and it enables a positive and constructive two-way communication between us and our schools.
We know from experience that the provision of hot school meals has positive impacts on the children’s education and wellbeing. It also takes enormous pressure off parents who know that their children are well fed during the school day, providing a communal, social experience for the children.
The extension of the hot school meals programme is positive and inclusive. As a community based social enterprise we look forward to rolling out our service to more schools in the north Monaghan area in the near future.