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College of GPs welcomes food and clothes in schools

College of GPs welcomes Government announcement on food and clothes in schools

The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners welcomes the Government’s announcement today to provide extra funding for programmes that will help feed and clothe more children from low-income families at school.

College President Dr Tim Malloy says, ‘The College is pleased to hear this news, especially as recent polls have shown that between 70 and 74 percent of Kiwis support the Government providing food to hungry children at school.

‘The College is committed to achieving health equity for New Zealand children. The Government working with business to provide food in schools is one way to improve low-income families’ diets and reduce the barriers they face to their children eating well and avoiding the health problems associated with poor diet.

‘While we acknowledge that the primary responsibility for making sure children go to school well fed and clothed lies with their parents, we also know that, in some cases, this just isn’t possible for a whole variety of complex reasons.

‘It’s also heartening to see initiatives that address some of low-decile children’s other health needs, such as for warm, dry clothing and lice treatment, being given a boost.’

The Government is providing funding to expand Fonterra’s and Sanitarium’s KickStart Breakfast programme, and a grant to KidsCan to boost a variety of the charity’s initiatives.

ENDS

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