‘Good nutrition vital for child development’


A child’s nutrition and safety, especially in school, should never be compromised, the Founder/Chairman of Avi Cenna International School, Ikeja, Lagos, Mr. Darwish Foudeh,, has said.

He spoke when a safety compliance certificate was conferred on the school by the Lagos State Safety Commission Director-General, Hon. Hakeem Dickson,  and Principal Consultant of InSiGHt, Dr. Nnenna Mba-Oduwusi.

This is in recognition of the merit of a Star-Two (on a 3-star ranking) safety compliance standard of the Commission and a level three (of a five-tier ranking) of SafeZoneTM  obtained by the school.

Foudeh said good nutrition plays a huge role in child’s optimal development. Explainng this, he said: “Nutrition is important. Eating a balanced diet is vital for good health and wellbeing. Food provides our bodies with the energy, protein, essential fats, vitamins and minerals to live, grow and function properly. We need a wide variety of different foods to provide the right amounts of nutrients for good health and that are why the school go extra mile in providing quality food to our pupils and students.”

He added that in order for children to grow properly, they must eat a well-balanced diet. “A well-balanced diet incorporates all of the food groups represented in the food guide pyramid. Having a healthy diet and focusing on nutrition are some of the simplest and most important ways to prevent the onset of disease. Healthy eating can help prevent many chronic diseases. These include obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, and type 2-diabetes. And that dovetailed into the high level of safety as observed in the school. There are no sharp edges but blunt or round poles, including the staircases.”

The School Safety project is a programme embarked by the Lagos State Safety Commission is geared towards ensuring the safety of every child and student in Lagos State. One major component of the project involves an assessment of the systems that educational institutions have in place to ensure that risks to the safety and health of pupils, staff and parents are as minimal as possible.

The assessment process provides a day of practical advice and guidance from the safety audit team. Although, some schools regularly self-assess and undertake regular safety inspections, but an annual audit ensures that the schools’ health and safety practices are as robust as possible and also an essential requirement for safety certification by the Lagos State Safety Commission.

InSiGHt health consulting Ltd is an accredited Safety Agent for the Lagos State School Safety Project. In collaboration with the Royal Society of the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) InSiGHt implements SafeZone, which is an accreditation system that provides a vehicle for assessing the level of compliance of health and safety standards in schools? InSiGHt Health has exclusivity with ROSPA for school safety audits in Nigeria.

The recognition of safety compliance of schools by the Lagos State Safety Commission continues and would get to all the schools that have achieved a feat in making safety a priority in their schools.

Dr. Mba-Oduwusi said: “We congratulate Avi Cenna International School for demonstrating such interest and zeal to ensuring safety in the institution; we are pleased to recognise their achievements as a level 3 school. We encourage other schools to follow the same path.’’



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