"Why nutrition is crucial from pregnancy until infancy and the schoolgoing age is because it concerns the health of the child. Children will be healthy and smart if they receive adequate nutrition," he noted while addressing the residents of Banyumas, Central Java, here, Friday.
During the event, the head of state distributed assistance under the non-cash allowance program called Family Hope Program and food supplements to the residents of Banyumas.
Pregnant women, toddlers, and infants require better nutrition, hence apart from biscuits, other food items, such as fish, meat, chicken, and vegetables should be part of their daily diet.
"This is important because global competition will become very stiff in the next 10 years, so children have to be smart," he said.
Jokowi was accompanied by Health Minister Nila Moeloek, Minister/State Secretary Pratikno, and Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo during the visit to Banyumas.
Earlier, President Jokowi has expressed hope that no students would drop out of schools, as Indonesia needs capable human resources to face the global competition.
The president made the statement while distributing 3,317 Smart Indonesia Cards (KIP) in the State-run High School SMAN 2, here, Banyumas, on Friday.
The government is keen to see every child go to school in good condition. Those, who had earlier dropped out, can now resume their studies by availing the A, B, or C education package.
The Jokowi administration has also provided funds through the KIP program to ensure that students of elementary, junior, and senior high schools have money to buy educational necessities.
Every elementary school student holding a KIP card receives Rp450 thousand; junior high school student, Rp750 thousand; and senior high school student, Rp1 million, annually.(*)