The Spring Sprout Project
Time period: 2011 – 2016
Partner: China National Committee for the Care of Children (CNCCC)
Project Introduction: By equipping rural schools in China’s impoverished regions with “Spring Sprout Kitchens” and training kitchen administrators, the Spring Sprout Project helps ensure kids have reasonably portioned, nutritionally balanced meals in the hope of improving the malnutrition suffered by many children in China’s impoverished regions.
To the children living in the numerous impoverished regions, if their school doesn’t have a decent kitchen, it means that, long-term, their only option is to carry rice and soybeans from home to the school and hastily heat them on crude stoves for their lunch every day. Because of this, the nutritional subsidy offered by the government often is used instead to subsidize living expenses and, as this continues and becomes the norm, the nutrition that children so vitally need during their growth years is lost forever. In order to turn “financial aid” into “safe meals”, the Spring Sprout Project emerged just at the time it was needed. Because, when faced with the plight of these innocent children, truly “nothing is more important than a good meal.”
A Bridge on the Road to Growth
In 2011, from the establishment of the first Spring Sprout Kitchen in Guangxi, this bridge built out of love has crossed mountains and rivers, connecting 1.94 million children with the outside world. The pier at the end of the bridge is health, and it leads to the future. It accompanies them every day as they grow, over the mountain paths they walk, and through the streams that they wade, bringing more possibilities to realize the dream of changing their fate.
Areas covered by the Project
Our charitable achievements have supported our confidence in the growth of the Spring Sprout Project. Ever since the Project was launched, experts from the National Working Committee on Children and Women (NWCCW) under the State Council, the Chinese Nutrition Society (CNS), the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) and other organizations have provided us with professional guidance, and developed a scientific evaluation model tailored to the Project, which covers project operations, the state of nutritional education, the improvements in students’ nutrition and other dimensions. According to the Institute of Child and Adolescent Health of Peking University’s research into the health and physical condition of the students in schools with Spring Sprout Kitchens:
Effective Improvements in Children’s Health
An Interlocking Method of Looking After Children
Ensuring children get nutritious, healthy meals is not only about providing state-of-the-art, modern equipment. It’s even more important to have a good system to guarantee the administration and operations of the kitchen. The Spring Sprout Project created an eight-piece administration system with four levels of supervision. Through training kitchen administrators, establishing regulations for kitchen operations, the network of volunteer supervisors, and other methods, this entire linked management system provides a safety net to ensure the food the children eat every day is healthy.
A Lever that Draws Out Multiple Forms of Participation
Health is like a large engineering project, if you rely only on your own strength, what you accomplish may be small and slight. But since it first launched, the Spring Sprout Project has relied on a grand concept: gather together the strength of a large group, making Spring Sprout everyone’s project. As such, we have treated Spring Sprout like a lever, with children’s nutrition as its focal point. Through multiple forms of cooperation, such as add-on construction, collaborative building and independent building of the Spring Sprout Kitchens, we have mobilized all manner of resources from the government, media, and social institutions, together establishing our homeland as a place of love and warmth. The Spring Sprout Project invested RMB 170 million, attracting RMB 860 million in investments by the government, schools, corporations, and the public.