SINGAPORE, 9 December 2017 – NTUC FairPrice (FairPrice) and NTUC-U Care today organised a joint event to help defray the cost of school expenses for low-income families through the FairPrice Share-A-Textbook and NTUC Back to School initiatives, which will take place over the weekend on 9 and 10 December 2017 at Devan Nair Institute for Employment and Employability.
Over 20,000 beneficiaries from the FairPrice Share-A-Textbook priority scheme, along with over 30,000 NTUC-U Care Fund beneficiaries comprising NTUC union members and their school-going children, have been invited to attend the fair that will make available donated textbooks and school essentials.
Mr Seah Kian Peng, CEO, NTUC FairPrice, said, “We are encouraged by the continued support for the FairPrice Share-A-Textbook initiative. This year we have empowered the community by introducing a new digital platform for parents to donate and exchange books. In addition, we continue to collect textbooks at selected stores for distribution to the less fortunate. More than 300,000 books were collected and today, we partner NTUC-U Care’s Back to School initiative in distributing them. This collaboration with NTUC-U Care streamlines our efforts in helping low-income families defray the cost of school expenses.”
Mr Zainal Sapari, Assistant Secretary-General and Director, Care and Share Department, NTUC, said, “NTUC is constantly looking at ways to help our low-income union members lessen their financial burden. Our members look forward to the NTUC Back to School Fair as they prepare for the new school term, as it helps them stretch their dollar on schooling needs. Our partnership with the FairPrice Share-A-Textbook project this year brings even greater value and convenience to our members, all under one roof.”
Distribution of Textbooks
More than 20,000 beneficiaries, aged 7 to 16, from the FairPrice Share-A-Textbook priority scheme have been invited to pick from a selection of over 300,000 textbooks that were generously donated by the public via donation points at selected FairPrice stores island-wide. Last year, 13,000 beneficiaries collected textbooks from this initiative.
Some 300 volunteers, from 50 supporting partners together with FairPrice staff, were involved in the collecting, sorting and organising of the textbooks for the FairPrice Share-A-Textbook Project.
For the public at large, FairPrice also launched a new digital platform – a mobile app and online portal – for parents to donate and exchange textbooks. Developed in partnership with Microsoft Singapore and Nanyang Polytechnic, the digital platform has seen more than 2,000 users sign up for the service since it was launched less than a month ago on 15 November.
The FairPrice Share-A-Textbook mobile app and online portal allows parents to easily post textbooks that they want to donate by scanning the textbook’s barcode, and users can select and arrange to collect the textbooks they need from donors. All are eligible to both donate and receive textbooks through this platform at any time, at www.fpshareatextbook.sg.
Fair for Schooling Essentials
Beyond textbooks, 30,000 NTUC-U Care Fund beneficiaries comprising NTUC union members and their school-going children have been invited to attend the 13th Back to School fair held within the same premises. The fair is organised to complement the U Care Back to School Voucher programme, which to-date, a total of $3,068,500 has been disbursed to beneficiaries in 2017. Each successful applicant is given a booklet of U Care Back to School Vouchers worth $125 for each eligible school-going child.
Beneficiaries of the programme will be able to maximise use of their Back to School vouchers at the fair, which offers exclusive deals and special promotions on school-related merchandise, including school bags and shoes, assessment books and stationary, offered by participating merchants.