An Adopt a School program to help rebuild Fijian schools that have been devastated by Cyclone Winston has been announced by the Honourable Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama.

eight_col_education_school_books_16x10Foreign governments, donor agencies, companies, community groups, sporting bodies and individuals are being asked to adopt individual schools and spearhead the building process. And the Prime Minister has urged both local and international participation as the best way to assist the nation’s children recover from the trauma of Winston.

“The experts are telling us that our students are much more likely to put the cyclone beyond them if they can get back into permanent classrooms as soon as possible. Thousands of Fijian schoolchildren are currently being taught in temporary shelters or tents. But we urgently need to rebuild those classrooms and facilities that have been damaged and destroyed and to a much higher standard to survive future events. This is a wonderful way in which people can partner with the Government to get the job done as quickly as possible”, he said.

The Adopt a School initiative comes after the Fiji Institute of Engineers sent 70 of its members in 22 teams to produce detailed structural reports on the state of schools in the devastated areas and their precise requirements. They range from repairs to damaged facilities in some places to the rebuilding of entire schools in others which bore the brunt of Winston’s fury.

fiji-data-800x534“We intend to roll out this program as soon as possible. In the coming days, we will release a list of the schools that are being assessed, and as the assessments are done, the reports on those schools will become progressively available to potential donors. These reports are being done by properly qualified structural engineers so there is no question that any contribution will be money well spent. The integrity of this program is paramount”, the Prime Minister said.

A precise dollar value is being placed on the requirements of all schools and potential sponsors will be able choose a school that matches their ability to contribute.  “Obviously where a school has been destroyed or severely damaged, the commitment required will be greater and that school might need a multilateral or bilateral partner, company or civil society organisation with deeper pockets. But in some cases, the required outlay is much less and within the ability of an individual, a community group or sporting body to engage in the rebuilding process”, he said.

The PM said the Government’s overriding objective is to build new facilities capable of withstanding future cyclones. “There is no point in rebuilding our schools in the same way just to have them damaged or destroyed again. The reason why the participation of the Fiji Institute of Engineers is so important is that these experts will tell us precisely what we need to do to build structures that last”.

7192308-3x2-700x467The PM said potential sponsors could also be assured of the accuracy of the assessments made by the Fiji Institute of Engineers. “The FIE is an independent body and its expert opinion is highly regarded locally and by the international donor community. I especially want to thank the Institute on behalf of the Government and the nation for carrying out this program of assessment free of charge as its contribution to the relief effort”, he said.

The Government envisages the links between sponsors and adopted schools will be ongoing because of the personal relationships that will be forged under the program. “This is a wonderful opportunity to make a connection with a particular school and community, help get it back on its feet and share the joy of our young people and their families as they resume the learning process in proper facilities”, the PM said.

“You may be a company with the ability to undertake rebuilding or repairs. You may be a community or sporting group that can band together and raise funds for the reconstruction effort. You may be an individual or a family with a means to make a substantial donation to pay others to undertake the work required. But whoever you are, you can help the children of Fiji resume their normal lives and put the trauma of Winston behind them”.



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The Malaysia Global Business Forum will be hosting a Business and Networking Lunch in conjunction with the official visit of H.E. Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama, Prime Minister of Fiji’s official visit to Malaysia on the 14th of May, 2016. To attend this important event please follow follow this link (read more)







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