U.S.D.A. allocates $100 million for McGovern-Dole

by Eric Schroeder
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WASHINGTON — Secretary of Agriculture Ed Schafer on Monday said more than 72,000 tons of agricultural commodities valued at nearly $100 million will be allocated under the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Program for fiscal year 2009 as funds become available.

"The McGovern-Dole program has touched the lives of millions of the world’s children, providing nutritious meals so that they can focus on their studies, not their hunger," Mr. Schafer said of the program, which will use the funds to help children, women and school communities in 15 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. "I am proud of the United States’ commitment to feeding a hungry world."

To date, the McGovern-Dole program has provided meals to more than 22 million children in 41 countries and boosted school attendance by an estimated 14% overall, and by 17% for girls.

The program is named in honor of Ambassador and former Senator George McGovern and former Senator Robert Dole for their efforts to encourage a global commitment to school feeding and child nutrition. Both men were recognized in October of this year by the World Food Prize for their leadership in forging the link between the productivity of American farmers and the needs of hungry children around the world.

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