Nov 12, 2014  Guangdong / China

Social project in China and Vietnam to open libraries with Light Up Initiative

Henkel supports children’s education in Chinese school

Light Up, a MIT initiative, has provided a whole library that will transform the lives of more than 340 children in Guangdong province in China.

"I believe that change in the world begins and ends with education,” said Tom Stader, who together with a group of friends set up The Library Project. “I believe in children having access to books and literacy, and in supporting teachers and rural educators in China,” he said. The project aims to open more than 1,400 libraries in China and Vietnam to bring books to some of the poorest children.

Forging corporate partnerships has been key to the charity’s success and a partnership with Henkel helps invest in the future of children and their experience of reading.

Thanks to Henkel’s “Light Up” MIT initiative, Stader was able to help Shangting primary school in the Guangdong province. Henkel employees who signed up for the MIT scheme donated books for the school library. The project also allowed to transform one of the rooms at the school into a unique reading space. All in all, the donation for the project amounted to 3,631 euros.

The 19 teachers at the Shangting primary school have also benefited from this donation. They now have more than 1,000 new books that they can use in the classroom and a space for their students to enjoy reading.

“Before this donation, we only had a few books stored in an old room – only a few students came to that room after school. Now, things have changed,” explains the school’s head teacher. “This room is not only fun and interesting but also safe for children to play and relax. Our students can now broaden their knowledge through reading various books in a nice environment.”

“At the school in Guangdong you could really see the impact Henkel’s donation had on the lives of these children,” said Amy Zhou, project leader from Henkel, who attended a special ceremony at the school when the donation was made. “The children were looking at the books and sharing them, some were even dancing. It was nice to see them so happy,” she said.

Social responsibility has been fundamental to Henkel’s corporate culture for decades. In order to contribute to social progress, the company founded the “Make an Impact on Tomorrow” (MIT) program in 1998. Through MIT, Henkel channels donations and sponsorship of social projects employees and retirees are involved in.

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