LOVEH2O WATER FUND Content BannerWater cuts and poor water access force schools to close, and SA learners lose out.  That’s the reason behind Woolies and MySchool new school water fund.

For scores of South African learners, frequent water cuts and poor access to water mean repeated disruptions. Because of hygiene issues, water cuts force schools to close and children are losing out on valuable education time.   That’s why Woolworths has announced a R1.5 million investment in water infrastructure for schools, and the launch of an ongoing LOVEH2O WATER FUND.

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Over the past three years, the country has been locked in the worst drought in its history, with the Western, Eastern and Northern Cape bearing the brunt. In response to the National Government’s declaration that the drought in South Africa is a national disaster, Woolworths’ R1.5m starter funding will help to pay for water tanks to harvest and store rainwater at schools in these provinces.

Little Flower Primary School Mosel image

Little Flower Primary School in Mosel, Uitenhage near Port Elizabeth is one of over a 100 schools that have already received much needed water tanks donated by Woolworths to assist them in becoming water secure.

Rainwater harvesting from roofs is a highly effective strategy for improved water management and lightening the load on municipal water supplies. The water can be safely used for washing hands and flushing toilets, which are the two main reasons that schools close and send children home when there are water cuts. What’s more, this supply of rainwater can be used to irrigate food gardens. That means that even in times of drought, schools can still produce vegetables and fruit to supplement their feeding schemes with fresh, healthy foods.

The LOVEH2O WATER FUND will also enable MySchool supporters who are concerned about water conservation and education, to be part of an initiative that improves water security in drought-stricken and under-resourced communities.

‘This investment and the launch of the LOVEH2O WATER FUND aims to make a sustainable difference to schools in their water-saving efforts so that they are empowered to become water secure through national disasters like the one we are currently facing,’ says Feroz Koor, Woolworths Holdings Group Head of Sustainability.  

Koor explains that over the past few years, Woolworths has already donated and installed more than 100 water tanks at needy schools across the country. ‘Responsible water use is a core focus of our Good Business Journey, and we’ve also made water conservation and water education a priority in school communities.’ Water is also a key focus of the Woolworths Education Programme, which over the past four years has presented over 4 500 water conservation lessons, reaching more than 190 000 learners and 1 559 educators in 410 primary schools across the country. 

Along with education and water security initiatives, Woolworths continues to be a long-term partner of Food & Trees for Africa’s flagship EduPlant programme, which teaches schools various techniques to harvest and use water efficiently to grow flourishing food gardens.