Education

Australia gives 6,150 desks and 3,600 chairs for cyclone-affected schools

Australian High Commissioner, Margaret Twomey, handed over 6,150 desks and 3,600 chairs to the Ministry of Education today, donated by the New South Wales Department of Education for cyclone-affected schools. Ms. Twomey said she hoped it would help enable students to return to school and resume learning. TWOMEY: “The donation of this furniture continues Australia’s […]

Peni Shute

May 4, 2016 4:29 pm

Australian High Commissioner, Margaret Twomey, handed over 6,150 desks and 3,600 chairs to the Ministry of Education today, donated by the New South Wales Department of Education for cyclone-affected schools.

Minister for Education, Hon. Dr. Mahendra Reddy and the Australian High Commissioner to Fiji, Ms. Margaret Twomey during the handover this morning. (AHC)
Minister for Education, Hon. Dr. Mahendra Reddy and the Australian High Commissioner to Fiji, Ms. Margaret Twomey during the handover this morning. (AHC)

Ms. Twomey said she hoped it would help enable students to return to school and resume learning.

TWOMEY: “The donation of this furniture continues Australia’s longstanding support to education in Fiji and demonstrates our commitment to supporting Fiji’s recovery over the longer term.”

Minister for Education, the Hon Mahendra Reddy, welcomed the timely contribution and noted that the Ministry of Education would distribute the desks and chairs to schools in need.

REDDY: “This assistance further supports our resolve to improve our school concept of “Home away from Home” which is intended to provide an ideal learning environment to our children. Cyclone Winston had severely damaged this learning environment and we are thankful to NSW Department of Education for this kind gesture. Ensuring our children are not deprived of access to quality education is our foremost priority and thus we salute this assistance from the people of Australia. I also want to acknowledge the continued support to Fijian education by Government of Australia which is making a huge difference in our efforts to normalise our education system.”

The donation was initiated by Geoff Carroll, an employee of the NSW Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards (BOSTES).

Mr. Carroll, who has links to Rotuma and lives in Sydney, approached the Fiji High Commission in Canberra to offer excess school furniture for donation.

CARROLL: “BOSTES is happy to have been in a position to be of assistance to the schools of Fiji affected by Cyclone Winston. It has been great working with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and their contractor HK Logistics in making the donation possible.”

The Australian Government assisted with the costs of shipping the desks and chairs to Fiji.

Australia’s total package of assistance to Fiji following TC Winston now stands at FJD $53 million (AUD $35 million).

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