BDC Donates a Special Needs classroom block for disabled children in Tonota Village

PROJECT AMOUNT: P 1.57 Million

Date: April 2013

Botswana government’s major agency for commercial and industrial development, Botswana Development Corporation (BDC) over the weekend set a milestone and donated a classroom block worth over P1.5 million to the disabled children in Tonota Primary School.

Briefing the participants on the project during the handing over ceremony, the BDC Board Chairman, Blackie Marole, narrated how the Deputy Speaker and Member of Parliament for Tonota South, Pono Moatlhodi approached the corporation with a request to assist in the construction of the classroom block for disabled children at Tonota Primary School.

He said that corporation agreed to the request because it was in line with the tenets of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policy. “We saw it as a continuation of our collective CSR effort to join hands in the spirit of Botho and spare a thought for those who are less fortunate and privileged than us. We therefore committed P1.57 million and engaged Kebo Holdings Pty Ltd, to construct this special needs classroom block,” he relayed.

Marole further stated that the corporation built a similar block in Francistown in 2009 at a tune of P800 000. He said that the two projects are a sign that BDC is committed to the development of quality education. While delivering a keynote address, the Assistant Minister of Trade and Industry, Keletso Rakhudu who was also the guest speaker, commended BDC for its charity gesture emphasizing that it is every child’s right to attend a decent school and receive quality education.

“These young boys and girls need to be fully equipped with knowledge today and tomorrow so that we are sure the future of this beautiful nation is built on solid and sound individuals,” he said.

Rakhudu also said that the gesture by BDC is not only in tandem with the objectives of the Revised National Policy on Education but also with the aspirations of vision 2016 especially the pillars of “an educated and informed nation” and “a compassionate, just and caring nation”.

He also noted that education is the key to transformation of societies and improving the socio-economic well-being of the people.

“There is a saying which that to educate a child is to educate a nation. Any community or society that undermines that is bound to find itself in a perpetual cycle of backwardness and poverty,” he said. Further, Rakhudu, emphasized that Botswana government is committed to the principle of education for all, including those living with disabilities.

“ In this regard government included a section on Special Education in the Revised National Policy on Education (RNPE) in 1994 and National Policy on Care for People with Disabilities of 1996. For her part, the Regional Education Director in the Central Region, Molebi Morolong also thanked BDC for gesture of goodwill adding that the Ministry of Education and Skills Development will help facilitate the project with other needed resources.

She relayed that they will approach different stakeholders to help buy such items as chairs, tables and stoves to meet the needs of the disabled children.

Giving a vote of thanks, the Deputy Speaker at the National Assembly and the Legislator for Tonota South, Pono Moatlhodi also showered praises to BDC for its continuous support to the disadvantaged members of his constituency.

He also thanked the school head; Maria Siyangaphi for her active involvement is such projects. Kebo Holding, a construction company that was engaged in the project also donated.