HAITI: Apparel group Sae-A helps fund $1m school
The philanthropic arm of South Korean apparel giant Sae-A Trading Co has helped to fund a US$1m school in northern Haiti that will educate the children of many of its garment workers.
The new S&H School is part of ongoing reconstruction efforts in the country following the devastating earthquake in January 2010, and is near to Sae-A's Haiti facility - S&H Global - in the Caracol Industrial Park.
The initiative by the Sae-A Foundation is part of a joint investment with the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), and will provide free education to 200 Haitian students, with enrollment expected to double to 400 students over the next four years.
"At Sae-A, we make investing in the communities in which we work a priority," said Sae-A chairman Woong-Ki Kim. "While our business investments create jobs and stimulate markets, we firmly believe that education is critical in ensuring a better life for future generations."
The school has worked with the community to address what have historically been barriers to Haitian education, such as inadequate funding, supply shortages, and lack of qualified teachers.
Those attending the school will learn Haitian Creole, French, and English. The curriculum incorporates the latest technology, and has been designed to contribute to boosting Haiti's competitiveness. The school will also serve the wider area by acting as a community centre and hosting social events.
Sae-A established S&H Global and began manufacturing operations in 2012. As the anchor tenant at the Caracol Industrial Park, it is also its largest employer and has committed US$85m to set up new vertical operations that will provide jobs for 20,000 Haitian workers.
Across its total operations, the group exports about US$1.4bn worth of apparel from its facilities in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Haiti, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Cambodia, and employs over 50,000 people at its own and partner facilities.
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