Considering the critical role that skills development and education play in human development, the Sanlam Foundation (our primary corporate responsibility vehicle) identified the Sanlam Blue Ladder Schools Programme as our flagship socio-economic development initiative. Through this programme, we are partnering with schools to improve maths competency and provide crucial health and wellness skills for learners.
While this programme has previously only been rolled out in South Africa (with a total of 75 schools onboarded since 2015), it has now reached beyond the border and into Africa in partnership with SEM.
In November 2018, we provided facilities worth N$3 million to the Haimbili Haufiku Senior Secondary School in Namibia. Sanlam Namibia donated 15 state-of-the-art computers to the school to address the learners’ urgent need for information and communication technology studies. In partnership with the Eenhana Vocational Training Centre, Sanlam Namibia also renovated several of the school’s laboratories as well as the school library. The company further partnered with the libraries of Namibia University of Science and Technology and the University of Namibia to donate over 1 000 books to the school’s library.
Going forward, one school from a different region in Namibia will benefit each year for the next three years. SEM has subsequently identified schools in Kenya, Malaysia, Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia that will benefit from the programme in 2019.
SEM’s adoption of the Blue Ladder Schools programme comes on the back of several conversations with SEM’s management team (as well as with certain in-country representatives) in 2017 to establish the key social and community issues facing the different markets we operate in outside of South Africa. These conversations led to a focus on consumer financial education, poverty alleviation and social and enterprise development, which align with the focus areas of the Sanlam Foundation and the intended outcomes of the Blue Ladder Schools programme.