It was back to school for Lafarge South Africa when they handed over two classrooms, ablution facilities and play facilities to Mbombo Combined School in Komatipoort, Mpumalanga earlier today.
The buildings material company donated the resources to the school after discovering that the Grade R learners were being taught in an unsafe, dilapidated structure and that they did not have ablution facilities. Despite being designated a Quintile 2, non-fee paying school with over 60 children in a class and a substantial number of orphans, Mbombo has consistently recorded matric pass rates of over 70% for the past four years. The pass rate was 77% last year.
The school has approximately 950 pupils and 31 teachers.
"We are delighted to be able to hand over these facilities to Mbombo Combined School. This is a first step in ensuring proper, hygienic ablution facilities for the school," said Lafarge South Africa's Country Manager: Communications and Public Affairs Unathi Batyashe-Fillis. "The learners and teachers more than deserve it. They are achieving against the odds and in the face of huge challenges. The parents are also incredibly committed as they maintain the school. And the children want to learn despite the less-than-ideal circumstances in which they find themselves."
The school has more than 90 orphans, 27 child-headed homes and almost half of the pupils - 432 children - live with relatives and grandparents. Batyashe-Fillis said it is humbling to witness a community that is so passionate about education, even with these challenges, as demonstrated by the consistently outstanding matric results.
"Early childhood development has proven to be directly related to a child's overall development and the adult that they will become. We hope that this gesture on our part will contribute greatly to the development of Komatipoort and its people. Lafarge South Africa is committed to the development of South Africa, and that starts with its youngest citizens," said Batyashe-Fillis.
All materials used during construction were Lafarge Products, with an added bonus being the 31 jobs that were created during the project.
note to editor
With a well-balanced presence in 90 countries and a focus on Cement, Aggregates and Concrete, LafargeHolcim (SIX Swiss Exchange, Euronext Paris: LHN) is the world leader in the building materials industry. The Group has 115,000 employees around the world and combined net sales of CHF 33 billion (EUR 27 billion) in 2014. LafargeHolcim is the industry benchmark in R&D and serves from the individual homebuilder to the largest and most complex project with the widest range of value-adding products, innovative services and comprehensive building solutions. With a commitment to drive sustainable solutions for better building and infrastructure and to contribute to a higher quality of life, the Group is best positioned to meet the challenges of increasing urbanization.
About Lafarge South Africa
Lafarge South Africa, a member of the LafargeHolcim group, manufactures and supplies cement, aggregates and readymixed concrete and fly ash through its various business units. It focuses on providing solutions to help the sustainable development of better cities that benefit the country's people. Through having a strong presence in all of its business lines, it is in a unique position to contribute to urban construction, while also helping to build better cities, rural towns and villages. For further information, visit our website on: www.lafarge.co.za.
For further information, please contact:
Unathi Batyashe -Fillis (Ms)
Tel: +2711 657 1109
Mobile: +82 8721120