3 WAY PARTNERSHIP TO BENEFIT SCHOOL CHILDREN VIA FIRST CARIBBEAN
Twenty school children will be able to log on and benefit from the online schooling that is likely to continue into the new school term as a result of a three way partnership between the Rotary Club of Barbados, the Ministry of Education Technological and Vocational Training and a local bank.
CIBC FirstCaribbean recently presented the Rotary Club and the Ministry of Education, Technological and Vocational Training with 20 WiFi enabled Alcatel tablets which are to be distributed to children as the Ministry and the Rotary Club seek to ensure that ‘no child is left behind.’
In a short presentation ceremony held at the Ministry, President of the Rotary Club of Barbados Ms. Fiona Hinds explained that with the club’s theme of ‘Service above Self,’ they embarked on a project to seek out sponsor partners to make sure that all children had a chance to succeed in the digital world. This was to help to ensure that there were enough devices, especially for the children whose parents or guardians may not have been able to afford them.
Manager, Business Development, Wealth Management at CIBC FirstCaribbean, Raymond Ward explained why the bank got involved, stating that since the introduction of the lockdown due to Covid-19, many lessons were learnt including having to work from home, “but many of our students did not have the right tools to work from home” he stated and that is why the bank readily answered the call to assist.
He also went on to explain that the bank had also helped out a number of other organisations during the Covid-19 crisis. “In March when the first cases started to surface in the region, we donated US$250,000 to the various countries to assist with the purchase of much needed Covid-19 testing kits. In Barbados, we donated BDS$50,000 to the Adopt-a-family programme where vulnerable families were given $600 per month to assist with food and expenses. In addition, the bank donated $20,000 to the Barbados Alliance to End Homelessness, as part of an ongoing commitment, as we sought to assist the disadvantaged at this very trying time.” he explained
In accepting the donation of the tablets, Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Education Technological and Vocational Training, Senator Dr. Rommel Springer said the education sector had been hard hit by Covid-19 but the Ministry had a mandate to ensure that the education of its children was not compromised. He said that distance learning through the use of technology was now the norm and so the Ministry was very grateful to the Rotary Club and to CIBC FirstCaribbean for the donation of tablets.