News Releases

Educational Support in Africa - Improving the educational environment of over 10,000 children

Jun. 23, 2015

Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd.

While it is advancing initiatives to prevent the spread of malaria through its Olyset® net business, Sumitomo Chemical believes that improving the educational environment is essential for Africa to achieve self-sustaining economic development, and in 2005 the company began to use a portion of the revenues from its Olyset® net business for educational support, primarily in the form of building schools for elementary and junior high school students in Africa. In collaboration with the NGOs World Vision Japan and Plan Japan, over the past 10 years, the company has completed 18 projects in 11 countries in Africa, thereby improving the educational environment of over 10,000 children.

The results of this initiative are gradually beginning to emerge in the form of higher school enrollment and a lower rate of drop-outs. We have received words of gratitude, such as, "Prior to your support, the total number of students was about 290, but now it has increased to 379" (from Shapei Elementary School in Kenya), and, "Previously we were often unable to hold classes because of rain, and student performance was below standard, but since the new school was built, the students are happy to devote themselves to their studies" (from Kyakijuuto Elementary School in Uganda).

In fiscal 2015, we started two new projects in Kenya and Ghana. In addition to constructing elementary schools, to promote math and science education, as befits a chemical company, we are constructing classrooms for lab experiments in a technical school and providing training in teaching methods for math and science in elementary schools.

In addition, for the elementary schools in Africa that we previously helped to build, in fiscal 2014 we collected funds from Sumitomo Chemical Group executives and employees around the world in order to donate textbooks, desks, and chairs.

In order to contribute to the sustainable development of Africa, Sumitomo Chemical will continue to actively advance initiatives designed to improve the educational environments of children there, who represent Africa's future.

  • Olyset® net: A mosquito net designed to prevent malaria made from polyethylene fibers into which insecticide has been incorporated. The mosquito net has superior durability, as the insecticide in the fibers gradually seeps to the surface, enabling it to maintain its effectiveness for five years or more, even with repeated washing, and thereby making it an economical and effective means of protecting people from the mosquitoes that transmit malaria. In 2001, it was the world's first long-lasting insecticidal net whose use was recommended by the WHO, acknowledging its effectiveness.