Schiphol, Netherlands — As part of ongoing efforts to strengthen cocoa-growing communities, prevent child labor and invest in education, Cargill, Inc. and non-profit CARE, will build six new schools in Ghana.
The three primary schools, two kindergarten blocks and one junior high school, spread across six rural Ghanaian communities, will provide an estimated 700 children with access to education, the company reports. To further ensure their long-term success, Cargill and CARE enlisted the support of Ghana’s Ministry of Education, which will staff the new classrooms with qualified teachers.
“We believe the best way to safeguard the future of cocoa is to improve the livelihoods and wellbeing of farmers, their families and the communities where they live. Access to quality education is key to that goal, laying the foundation for strong communities and helping to develop the next generation of leaders, entrepreneurs and professional farmers,” says Aedo van der Weij, managing director of Cargill’s cocoa and chocolate business in Ghana.
“This project exemplifies our commitment to listening to and supporting the communities where we operate – in this case, by investing in education. In this way, we’re partnering with local leaders to bring long-lasting, meaningful change to cocoa-growers and their families and create a thriving cocoa sector for generations to come.”
Cargill and CARE have a long history of working together to address the root causes of child labor and expand educational opportunities for children, spanning more than a dozen years in Ghana alone, the company states. During that time, they have built more than 15 schools in Ghana, helping support the education needs of 1,120 children.
Rose Tchwenko, country director, CARE International in Ghana, says: “We are thrilled that Cargill has entrusted CARE to oversee this important project and we are proud that by partnering with Cargill to support the efforts of parents and the Government of Ghana to secure a bright and prosperous future for all children through education, we are also contributing to the fulfilment of the Cargill Cocoa Promise, an initiative that is well aligned with CARE’s own vision of a world where poverty has been overcome.”