The Ministry of Education announced its plan to provide free educational supplies to 63,000 students at an estimated cost of SR 53 million starting from the first semester of the current school year.
The ministry is implementing its plan in collaboration with the Takaful Charity Foundation, which has identified needy students in the Kingdom.
The foundation started implementing the project by providing school bags, clothing and breakfast, Al-Eqtisadiah daily reported on Saturday.
The foundation was founded in line with King Abdullah’s directives last year to help students financially and achieve the national strategic goals of social development with an allocation of SR 476 million a year.
It also plans to sign agreements with catering companies to supply meals in schools that do not have canteens, while students will be supplied with meal tickets in schools if there is a canteen operating in the campus.
According to informed sources the foundation will supply the personal needs of students at their homes in addition to organizing training programs to develop skills and aptitudes in the second phase of the project.
The plan also aims to help those who suffer from learning deficiencies.
“The most important duty of the Takaful Foundation is help needy students who face difficulties in their education,” said Prince Faisal bin Abdullah, chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Takaful.
The prince said the provincial and divisional education directorates and representatives of the foundation would implement the project with extreme care and discretion so that the dignity of benefiting students and their families is not affected. The foundation also plans to seek investments of public and private sector establishments in projects that would guarantee a steady income to the project. The foundation will also accept monthly donations from employees and individuals.
“Nutritious meals at the cost of SR 3 will be supplied 180 days annually. Each student will be supplied with two sets of clothes and shoes, one for summer and another for winter. They will also receive sports wear and shoes. The school bags and other accessories will cost SR 50 for each set,” said Saad Al-Fuhaid, undersecretary at the ministry.
Takaful is an independent foundation with no administrative or financial connection to the Ministry of Education. Its Riyadh headquarters has branches at education offices in other cities and governorates.
Prince Faisal said the foundation, which was officially established in 2008, would provide clothing, equipment and materials, and also work in collaboration with the Technical and Vocational Training Corporation and private institutions to hold training courses to give students practical skills required in their professional life.
It will pay special attention to male and female pupils in rural areas, where residents do not possess the means for a stable life due to limited income or the inability to move to other regions, as well as to pupils whose families experience urgent financial, social or health constraints.