Photo Credit: Courtesy Nevet
Israeli schoolchildren

As Israeli schoolchildren prepare to begin the academic year 2017-2018, the latest statistics by the Israeli nonprofit Nevet show that thousands of kids will go to class without the most important meal of their day – the breakfast sandwich.

Nevet (Heb=sprout), which provides 1.3 million nutritious daily sandwiches to 8,000 children from disadvantaged backgrounds and dysfunctional homes across 130 Israeli schools during the mid-morning break, released its most updated data on this critical social issue today. The findings underscore the critical role food plays in learning.

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According to Nevet:

· 83 percent of school principals reported improved school attendance rates due to the Nevet sandwich program;
· 96 percent of school principals said the children who received Nevet sandwiches showed improved school behavior – which leads to stronger academic performance;
· 57 percent of Nevet students who received a sandwich said they were motivated to attend school in part to get their daily sandwich;
· 90 percent of Nevet’s recipients come from financially unstable homes – those unable to secure a steady income.
· 13,500 children remain on the organization’s waiting lists, due to budgetary constraints.

“While most Israeli kids get sandwiches and snacks to eat during a mid-morning break, many students from disadvantaged or dysfunctional backgrounds come to school hungry and empty handed – and that’s where Nevet steps in,” said Rotem Yosef, Nevet’s vice president for strategic development.

“This hidden problem is about more than just nutrition or hunger. It’s also about establishing a healthy routine and creating a consistent nutritional anchor for the children every day. By feeding these kids breakfast, we feed their minds, giving them the opportunity to succeed and, hopefully, break the cycle of poverty.”

Nevet, founded by Leket Israel in 2006, provides nutritious daily school breakfasts for children from disadvantaged backgrounds and dysfunctional homes, fortifying them to concentrate on their studies and move towards a better future. The program distributes some 1.3 million breakfasts every year to 8,000 students daily at 130 schools across Israel during the morning break.

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David writes news at JewishPress.com.