M&AOSB’s CSR Department Opens New School Building in Nanttharpu
Yin Mon Aye
It was a rainy morning on May 29, 2018 when the ceremony for the opening of a new school building for the Basic Education Middle School of Nanttharpu was held from 9:00 to 11:00 AM at Nanttharpu village tract. The 90′ x 30′ one story R.C building was built by Myint & Associates Offshore Supply Base Limited (M&AOSB) and donations for school furniture were funded by the CSR department of M&AOSB as well as the local community.
The ceremony was attended by Regional Education Director U Kyaw Win together with representatives from the Regional Education Department, District Education Director (Acting) U Aye Lwin and representatives from the District Education Department, representatives from Ngapudaw’s Township Education Department and Township General Administration Department, officials from Nga Yoke Kaung and Nanttharpu Village Administration Offices, school committee members, CSOs, Myint & Associates Offshore Supply Base Limited (M&AOSB) as well as the local community. The new school building and the related school facilities in Nanttharpu B.E.M.S and Nga Yoke Kaung B.E.H.S were also successfully handed over to the Ministry of Education.
Opening speeches were given by the Regional Education Director U Kyaw Win, Township General Administration Officer U Kyaw Swe Win, Township Education Officer U Soe Win, M&AOSB Group General Manager U Myo Tin and the Headmaster U Sa Htay Win from Nanttharpu B.E.M.S. Everyone congratulated and acknowledged the efforts of the respective parties for upgrading the school and creating better educational opportunities for many students in the Nga Yoke Kaung region, without which, the students would have to commute to further areas in the pursuit of higher education. In addition, the school is now one step closer to becoming a high school in the coming year and the school committee and local community enthusiastically look forward to the future. Despite the stormy weather, the ceremony was successfully organized and completed with coordination from the local community, with over 70 people from the village volunteering for the venue setup and to cook and serve food. Although the rain ruined the outdoor roofing and stage, the volunteers enthusiastically prepared indoor seating instead of giving up and there were over 200 attendees from the village who were delighted to see the results of their participation and who are now even more willing to volunteer for activities in the future. The opening ceremony is a milestone for M&AOSB and is evidence that the CSR team has built a strong relationship with both the community volunteers and the local people.
Even though M&AOSB is in its investment phase and it will be some time before any returns on investment are reaped, the company has committed to a CSR program that will, in every way, bring benefits to the host community. The CSR activities, which include community facilitation workshops, stakeholders meetings, meetings with community leaders and members, and needs and impact assessment workshops have started since August 2017. “During the needs assessment workshops with the local community and committee members, it was discovered that educational development is the first priority as there is only one sub-middle school in Nanttharpu village, so the students have to travel by boat to Nga Yoke Kaung for higher education and many have stopped going to school. We also noticed that there is not enough school buildings and after several discussions with the school committee members and with the approval of the Ministry of Education and related government agencies, it was decided that we construct this school building.” said U Thike Soe, Government Engagement Manager.
The CSR program for fiscal year 2017-2018 includes the construction of the new school building, the renovation of the entrance gate and the flagpole, floor renovations at the Early Childhood Care and Development Center (ECCD) in Nanttharpu, the construction of a water trestle and 10-unit toilets, replacement of doors and windows, partitions in the classrooms, and renovation of the fencing in Nga Yoke Kaung. Moreover, corporate sponsorships were also given during the Kathina (Kahtain) Festival, to the local soccer team made up of 21 amateur footballers from Nga Yoke Kaung and neighboring villages in the Ngapudaw Township Soccer Championship, as well as during the Karen New Year Festival.
In the coming fiscal year 2018-2019, CSR activities will focus on improving basic infrastructure, developing local small and medium enterprises (SMEs), promoting health and wellbeing and most importantly, developing effective long-term partnerships with the local communities.