Friday 27th May 2016 – Central Province || Lack of quality infrastructure in rural schools has been blamed for the drop in education standards and Digicel Foundation has been praised for their part in addressing this issue.
This comment was made by Kairuku District Education Standards officer, Kenneth Seu, during the opening of a new double classroom for Saint Maria Gorethy Primary School in Kubuna Mission station, Kuni LLG of Kairuku District, Central Province.
“The standard of education in Papua New Guinea, particularly in Central Province, has fallen due to lack of infrastructure in so many schools so you coming with this marvellous building, it is very hard to express my heart felt gratitude,” Mr. Seu said to the Digicel Foundation team.
“I thank the Digicel Foundation for providing an Education network throughout the whole of Papua New Guinea.”
Representing the Foundation CEO, Beatrice Mahuru, at the launching of the new Classroom was Chief Operations Officer, Rita Abe who said the Foundation does not only go to where the Digicel tower or network is, but to where the community need is.
She told the community that education is a main pillar of the Foundation and focuses its efforts around rural, remote and marginalised communities.
The kit double-classroom was delivered by the Digicel Foundation at a cost K240, 000. 00 and will serve six villages in and around Kubuna mission station.
The two classrooms are fully furnished with 40 double desks to accommodate up to 80 students, an admin office, solar power installations and is well ventilated.
Under the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) program, the foundation has also provided the school with a 9000L water tank and two ablution blocks with ventilated improved lavatories and bucket shower rooms.
Catholic Education Secretary, Thomas A’afa who had once served this particular school as a Head Teacher, said the children were lucky to have such assistance from Digicel Foundation and urged the students, parents and community as a whole to look after the property and protect it from vandalism.
To date Digicel PNG Foundation has funded 462 classrooms, 21 Mobile Health Clinics, 3 rural Health Aid Posts, 3 Women’s Resource Centres, co-funded 5 Family Support Centres in partnership with UNICEF and NDoH, graduated 261 grassroots community based teachers in early childhood development and learning and over 14,600 men and women are now equipped with basic business skills. 800 people with special needs, their families and communities have been impacted by the Community Based Rehabilitation Program; and the Men of Honour Awards – a campaign against violence in PNG, is the latest to the Foundation’s development portfolio.
Established in October 2008, Digicel PNG Foundation has directly invested K50 million in PNG’s rural, remote and marginalized communities across all 22 provinces directly impacting over 500,000 people.