MARANGE - School children who abandoned classes last term because of hunger are now back in school after the Japanese government came to their rescue.
Students were forced to leave school due to malnutrition after their parents failed to harvest enough food during a long dry spell which hit the province. Netsai Mutsago, mother of two, confirmed that her two children had dropped out of school because of hunger but they had since returned due to food aid received.
Local food aid workers told The Zimbabwean that most students could not walk long distances to school because their bodies were weak and worn out. However, the Japanese government has channelled $1, 4 million through the Red Cross Society to prevent starvation in the diamond rich area. Hunger in Marange has reached alarming levels with relief agencies calling for provision of emergency food supplies. The area has been affected by a series of droughts and villagers have not been able to reap a harvest from their fields for several consecutive farming seasons. Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS) general secretary, Emma Kundishora revealed that her organisation has started food distribution to starving villagers.
She said the programme was a joint venture between the International Federation of Red Cross, Red Crescent Society and Japanese Government. ‘The programme will also assist other people groups across the country. The assistance we are receiving from our international partners will go a long way towards alleviating hunger from suffering villagers and children,’ Kundishora stated.