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Cemex Egypt signs third partnership agreement with UN World Food Programme

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World Cement,

Cemex Egypt has made an additional donation to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to support its Food-for-Education programme in Assiut Governorat, Egypt, which will benefit more than 4000 people. The WFP plays an active role in combating poverty and reducing malnutrition in Assiut, in cooperation with the Ministry of Education. This is the third partnership agreement that cement giant Cemex has signed with WFP.

WFP will use the donation to provide daily nutritious snacks and monthly take-home rations for the duration of an entire year to vulnerable school children and their families in food-deprived regions in Upper Egypt. Around 670 children in 23 community schools in Assiut and their family members will benefit from this donation. The programme contributes to increasing the enrolment, attendance and retention of children in Assiut.

The monthly take-home ration constitutes about 20% of the family’s monthly expenditure on food. It is provided only to families of students who complete the minimum required attendance rate; hence it is a very encouraging incentive for poor families in Assiut.

“The snack is enriched with essential nutrients and addresses around 25% of the child’s daily nutritional needs, thus alleviating short-term hunger and improving children’s performance during the school day,” said WFP Representative and Egypt Country Director Lubna Alaman. “The monthly take-home ration is also an incentive for families to enrol and keep their children in school since it is almost equivalent to the wage a child would earn if sent to work instead of school,” added Alaman.

The project ultimately supports the government’s efforts to improve the quality of education by 2015, in line with the international targets laid out in the UN Millennium Development Goals.

“We are glad to contribute to this important development activity in Egypt,” said Sergio Menéndez, President of Cemex Egypt. “This project contributes to the well being and health of young children, while encouraging them to go to school. We are very proud not only to respond and contribute to this noble and great cause, but to also sustain our support and ensure the maximum benefit for these children. Throughout its operations worldwide, Cemex strives to play a significant role in the communities it serves through sustainable social investment and environmental strategies.”

Adapted from press release by Rosalie Starling

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