Santam group concludes nationwide PPE donation with delivery to special needs schools in Witbank

3 min read 27 August 2020

South Africa’s largest general insurer, Santam concluded its nationwide donation of personal protective equipment (PPE) to Special Needs Schools when they handed over 40 disinfecting equipment kits to Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga – these kits are earmarked for 20 special needs schools in the Mpumalanga province. The handover took place at the WH De Klerk School in Modelpark, Emalahleni.

Over the past three weeks, Santam has handed over a total of 168 kits to 84 schools in the Free State, North West, Northern Cape and now the Mpumalanga province. The Department of Basic Education (DBE) requires the deep cleaning and disinfecting of schools on a daily basis to fight the spread of COVID-19. Santam CSI has decided to assist the DBE by supplying disinfectant equipment kits and training.

“As high-risk areas for the transmission of COVID-19, schools must be well-equipped to deal with the challenges of proper disinfection and sanitising protocols to ease the minds of both learners and parents. We were delighted to do so in partnership with the Minister and her team,” says John Lomberg, Head of Stakeholder Relations and CSI at Santam.

Minister Motshekga says, “The Santam donation is a significant contribution to us, and it signifies our strong partnership between Government and the private sector in the fight against COVID-19.  Santam is a long-term strategic partner of the Department. We have been working together on schools safety and risk mitigation for a while now. As part of disaster management and mitigation, Santam also stepped up to the challenge to assist with the development of a Standard Risk Assessment tool.”

“Risks assessment is a key aspect of school safety, and the Risk Assessment Tool will be used by the School Safety Committees of all Special Needs Schools to provide a heat map of high-risk areas. The intelligence gathered will enable the Safety Directorate of our Department, and its partners to respond appropriately and in good time. It will also provide reliable information for the planning of enhanced safety support to all public schools in our country.”

Minister Motshekga further commented that Santam is a natural partner in these uncertain times to mitigate the risk and save lives while we protect livelihoods. “We thank Santam for believing in the future of this country. We thank you for investing in the safety of the most vulnerable in our society.

“The partnership we have with Santam Insurance is unique and a special one. It is rooted not just in the ritual that corporates should and must invest in the communities in which they operate. Perhaps, due to the unique nature of our partnership with Santam Insurance – it should be considered as a model for businesses interested in investing in the basic education sector. Santam Insurance is a beacon of hope and progress towards a genuinely improved quality of basic education and partnerships for growth,” the Minister concludes.

Today’s donation of PPE also follows the group’s R10 million contribution to the Solidarity Fund and R10 million donation to various corporate social investment (CSI) initiatives that assist health workers and other essential service employees.

In addition to the provision of PPE kits, the handover event included the training of school representatives on how to use the equipment by National Security and Fire, a safety and security solutions provider. The kits comprise of the following:

The training comprised the correct use of the equipment, application of chemicals, identification of surfaces to apply the chemicals and pre-risk assessment methods.

“It’s our hope that once educators and learners return to school, they will feel safe in an environment that follows the strictest requirements of sanitisation, with staff that possess the knowledge to use the equipment as and when required,” adds Lomberg.