Skeen pupils thrilled with desk donation

Skeen Primary School principal, Phillemon Mashishi shares his excitement with pupils as he receives new desks from Unilever. Photo: Supplied


Children at Skeen Primary School will no longer have to use the floor to do their school work – and all this is thanks to a partnership between Unilever and The Wildlands Conservation Trust.

Skeen in Alexandra, east of Johannesburg, and Saphinda Primary School in Umlazi, south of Durban, are the latest recipients of 250 desks each to beef up their under-resourced facilities.

Unilever, through its Omo brand, is making a concerted effort in the area of education to empower children from marginalised communities and thereby drive positive change, said Unilever’s Preola Adam during the handover at Skeen.

She said the sponsorship of desks will have a profound impact on literacy development and academic performance at both schools.

Adam added that Unilever has committed to ensuring that all its plastic packaging is fully reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025.

Louise Duys, director of partnerships, marketing and events at Wildlands Conservation Trust said, “With a shortage of more than 300 000 school desks in South Africa, these desks will help us close the loop by cleaning the communities where we work and, in turn, supporting the education of children.

“Up until now, multi-layered multi-film materials used to package and increase the lifespan of products have not been recyclable and have, therefore, been incinerated or ended up in landfill sites, placing an enormous strain on the environment.”

The elated Skeen principal, Philemon Mashishi, said his school has 1 558 children and 38 teachers who are relieved with the Unilever desk donation. “We have been struggling to obtain school desks since 2010. Some parents have tried to assist by providing chairs for their children from their homes.

“The initiative will benefit the school immensely and come as a great relief, as a desk used to be shared among three children at a time. This made it difficult for them to concentrate, hence, the timing could not have been better and our children are thrilled to be receiving the new desks.”

What do you think about the new desks donated to Skeen Primary School? Tweet your views @AlexNewsZA

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