AkzoNobel and the Plan organization in the Netherlands are celebrating the 20th anniversary of a partnership which has supported the education of thousands of young people around the world.
Initially set up to improve the quality of education for children in developing countries, the company's Education Fund has since evolved to also support the employability of young people and set them on a proper career path. Over the years, tens of thousands of young people have benefited from dozens of projects in countries such as Bolivia, China, Ecuador, India, the Philippines and Vietnam.
"Education is one of the key pillars of our Human Cities initiative and we’re immensely proud of our long-established partnership with Plan Nederland," said Marten Booisma, AkzoNobel's Executive Committee member responsible for Human Resources.
"The spirit of innovation and creativity only flourishes with education and we remain committed to working together with Plan Nederland to identify how we can help future generations to realize their full potential."
Added Monique van 't Hek, Director of Plan Nederland: "We are proud to be working with AkzoNobel and the company's Education Fund. Together we have implemented 50 projects in 15 countries, with our most recent collaboration focused on training 146 disadvantaged youngsters (of whom 60 percent were women) to become stewards at sporting events in Brazil.
"I continue to appreciate the inspiring meetings and the personal involvement of AkzoNobel employees and hope to continue the partnership for many years so that we can provide many more young people with a better future."
Established in 1994, the partnership initially focused on building schools, training teachers and providing educational tools and equipment in developing nations. Since then, more emphasis has been placed on supporting vocational training programs designed to help young people find employment.
The anniversary was marked by the presentation of a cheque for €10,800 to Plan Nederland. The money was raised by AkzoNobel employees worldwide, who took part in various sporting activities during the month of September.