Mr. Saidai Duraisamy, Worshipful Mayor, Chennai Corporation, Mr. Irial Finan, President – Bottling Investment Group, The Coca-Cola Company dedicate Government Higher Secondary School, MKB Nagar

The school has been revitalized with contributions from new campaign partner World Vision who joined the campaign at the launch of Season 2 in San Francisco in August, 2012.

Revitalized facilities include separate toilet, dining area for boys and girls and promotion of physical sports and recreation
Support My School Telethon scheduled for 3rd February, 2013 to raise funds for Season 2 of the campaign.

Chennai, 25th January, 2013: To further advance its commitment to revitalize and rebuild healthy, active and happy schools in rural and semi-urban India, Coca-Cola India in association with NGO partner, World Vision India, announced revitalization of the first school under Season 2 of its flagship sustainability initiative – Support My School campaign. The 2nd edition of the campaign was flagged off with the dedication of the revitalized Government Higher Secondary School, at MKB Nagar. The school has been revitalized with contributions made by new campaign partner World Vision and its donors.

The school was dedicated to the children and the community by Mr. Saidai Duraisamy, Worshipful Mayor, Chennai Corporation, Mr. Irial Finan, President – Bottling Investment Group, The Coca-Cola Company, Mr. Atul Singh, President and CEO, Coca-Cola India and South West Asia, and Dr Jayakumar Christian, CEO & National Director, World Vision India.
Speaking about the project, Mr. Irial Finan, said, “In today’s business environment, businesses have to look beyond their corporate structures and work towards sustainability of the communities they operate in.I am extremely proud of the success Support My School has achieved in season 1, with the completion of more than 100 schools across India. We have witnessed transformative stories in the benefited schools as dropout rates have decreased and more students are attending school. These stories are not just limited to the students and staff of the schools but have extended to the communities which have come together to be a part of the change. We believe that this collaborative spirit has been one of the main achievements of Support My School. We look forward to our partnership with World Vision to make this campaign an even bigger success in Season 2.”

The dedication is part of a series of lead-up events to the Season 2 of the Support My School Telethon, which is scheduled to take place on 3rd February, 2013. This 12-hour LIVE event will garner support and raise money for the second season of the campaign in its aim to revitalize another 250 schools across the country. Launched in January 2011, the Support My School campaign aims to create a happy and healthy environment in schools for children across India by providing basic amenities such as access to water and proper toilets for girls and boys, enabling them to study in a cleaner, healthier and a more holistic environment. Season 1 of the campaign touched the lives of over 43,000 students across 10 states. For Season 2, the Coca-Cola Foundation has already committed USD 500,000.

Dr Jayakumar Christian, CEO & National Director, World Vision India said, “We are excited about partnering with Support My School in Season 2. We have seen the positive change being brought about by the campaign across the country. At World Vision India, we are committed to ensuring quality education for the children whom we serve. We believe this partnership will further our commitment to assure opportunities for employment and value based leadership for all students across rural and semi-urban India”.

About Support My School

Coca-Cola joined hands with NDTV to launch Support My School in association with UN-Habitat, Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), Pearson Foundation, Tata Teleservices and Sulabh International. It undertakes the following core activities as part of the campaign:

Provision of improved access to water

Appropriate sanitation facility for girls and boys

Improvement in the overall infrastructure and environment

Provision for sports and recreation facilities

Recharging groundwater through rainwater harvesting

Libraries and Teacher Training by Pearson Foundation

Computer Center by Tata Teleservices

With such necessary amenities in place, schools are able to provide a cleaner and healthier environment more conducive to learning.

Education in rural India suffers from several issues where lack of sanitation is a key reason for absenteeism and dropouts amongst students. This is especially noted in young girls who are forced to quit as they enter adolescence due to a lack of clean and functional toilets. Children are also likely to fall sick more often without clean water to drink or to wash hands. Support My School endeavors to eliminate this basic concern by spreading the initiative across the country with the help of campaign partners to execute the same.

About Coca-Cola India

Coca-Cola in India refreshes millions of consumers throughout the country with an exciting range of beverages including Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Thums Up, Fanta, Limca, Sprite, Maaza, Minute Maid Pulpy Orange, Minute Maid Nimbu Fresh, Minute Maid Mixed Fruit, Minute Maid 100 % juice (Minute Maid Apple, Minute Maid Orange, Minute Maid Grape), Georgia, Georgia Gold, Kinley, Kinley Club Soda and Burn through a network of more than one and a half million outlets. The Coca-Cola India system has invested more than US$ 2 billion in its Indian operations and provides direct employment to more than 25,000 people. The Coca-Cola Company has always placed high value on good citizenship. Coca-Cola India provides extensive support for community programs across the country, with a focus on education, health and water conservation. For further information on Company’s India operations and its products and initiatives, please visit www.coca-colaindia.com

About World Vision India

World Vision India is a Christian humanitarian organization working to create lasting change in the lives of children, families and communities living in poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people regardless of religion, caste, race, ethnicity or gender. Spread across 174 locations in India, World Vision works through long-term sustainable community development programmes and immediate disaster relief assistance.

For further queries please contact: Tanushree Mandal: 8860844839, Akanksha Seth: 9873333061