, Volume 47, Issue 3, pp 245–256 | Cite as

Food for Education in Honduras: Psychosocial correlates of childhood literacy

  • Thomas M. CreaEmail author
  • Antonia Eliana Diaz-Valdes
  • Elizabeth Gruenfeld
  • José Acevedo
  • Blain Cerney
  • Marlon Medina
  • Glenda Hernandez
  • Olga Canelas


School feeding programs in low- and middle-income countries tend to focus on school attendance and literacy. Some evidence suggests that bolstering schools as a nexus of community plays an important psychosocial function for children and families. This study examines the extent to which childhood literacy rates are associated with parents’ and teachers’ perceptions of community violence and cohesion, following participation in a large-scale school feeding program in the Department of Intibucá, Honduras. Primary school children (n = 3,147) from 176 schools completed standardized literacy tests. Scores were linked to parents’ (n = 328) and teachers’ (n = 537) responses about community cohesion and violence. Social bonding among parents was positively associated with children’s literacy. Community violence reported by teachers exerted a negative influence. The authors discuss these results in light of how vertically focused interventions such as school feeding can be integrated to account for the specific contextual factors that affect, and are affected by, the program itself.


School feeding Central America Honduras Psychosocial Food for Education Primary schools Program design 


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas M. Crea
    • 1
    Email author
  • Antonia Eliana Diaz-Valdes
    • 1
  • Elizabeth Gruenfeld
    • 1
  • José Acevedo
    • 2
  • Blain Cerney
    • 3
  • Marlon Medina
    • 4
  • Glenda Hernandez
    • 4
  • Olga Canelas
    • 4
  1. 1.School of Social WorkBoston CollegeChestnut HillUSA
  2. 2.School of SociologyNational Autonomous University of HondurasTegucigalpa, M.D.C.Honduras
  3. 3.Catholic Relief Services (CRS) El SalvadorSan SalvadorEl Salvador
  4. 4.Catholic Relief Services (CRS) HondurasTegucigalpa, M.D.C.Honduras

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