March 2007 Recipients
Disadvantaged kids won’t have to go to school wet this winter thanks to a $5,000 grant from the Mazda Foundation.
The Mazda Foundation funding will go towards KidsCan Charitable Trust’s ‘Raincoats for Kids’ programme.
The Trust, which aims to meet the basic physical and nutritional needs of disadvantaged children, was formed in 2005 and since then has been devoted to providing three necessities – food, shoes and raincoats – to primary and intermediate pupils. KidsCan has developed preventative programmes in response to an overwhelming need faced by lower decile schools.
Carl Sunderland, spokesperson for the KidsCan Charitable Trust is delighted the Mazda Foundation is supporting the ‘Raincoats for Kids’ programme.
“I am extremely happy Mazda is behind this. It’s great for a company like Mazda to get involved.”
The grant will enable the Trust to purchase 300 raincoats which be will specially made and distributed to students in June.
Carl says recent feedback after the distribution of raincoats to more than 8,000 students last year has shown that the donation of raincoats to disadvantaged kids has not only kept youngsters dry but also helped improve their attendance at school and academic performance.
“Giving them the raincoats also improves their self esteem and gives them pride by reducing social stigma. It also encourages kids to take more care of their clothes.”
The raincoats are distributed to students who are deemed by their principals and teachers as being worthy recipients but in some cases, entire schools are supplied with the coats.
“Before launching KidsCan initiatives, we approached principals and asked them what are the main barriers students face and what we could do to help.
“The overwhelming comments were that there was a need for suitable wet weather gear,” says Carl. “We are pleased to be able to help give kids things that most people take for granted.”