HRH Paduka Seri Pengiran Anak Isteri Pengiran Anak Sarah expresses her appreciation
Bandar Seri Begawan - A revolutionary rewards scheme initiated by the International School Brunei (ISB), which will see students' achievement directly contributing to the eradication of the deadly polio disease, was launched yesterday by HRH Paduka Seri Pengiran Anak Isteri Pengiran Anak Sarah at the International Convention Centre in Berakas.
In collaboration with Standard Chartered Bank (SCB), The Global Poverty Project,. World Health Organization and UNICEF, the school has abandoned the tired reward systems familiar to schools around the world and created Polio Points, a trailblazing initiative which will reward student achievement with humanitarian aid, immunising children affected by polio.
Students' achievements in school are rewarded with Polio Points, and these points are converted into vaccines by the generous sponsorship of SCB. Points are recorded and displayed on the website wwwpoliopoints.org for the whole world to see. Designed by MixMedia Group, this website is critical to the project's success and is supported by ISB parents and students.
Matthew Savage, Secondary Principal of ISB said they can realistically see Polio Points spreading into schools around the globe, and making a tangible contribution to the eradication of polio. "The equation we have presented to our students is simple: do something amazing, and you save a life. What could be more incentivising than that? I believe that it is their generation that can change the world and this unique project offers them a chance to do so, one point at a time," he added.
HRH Paduka Seri Pengiran Anak Isteri Pengiran Anak Sarah in a sabda prior to the initiative's official launch expressed appreciation to the students and staff of ISB for their efforts, creativity and caring attitude towards humankind, in bringing this project to fruition.
"The success of the project going forward will still rest upon the shoulders of the students themselves, requiring their continued efforts and dedication and strong determination to deliver. I urge them to remember this opportunity in all they do, both now and in the future," HRH said in the sabda.
HRH also called on the staff of ISB to identify an effective mechanism whereby they could involve several other selected local students from the government secondary schools to participate in this project, so that they could also learn to run similar projects and also be aware of global issues and trends.
ISB's journey towards creating Polio Points started when they listened to Hugh Evans, the CEO of the Global Poverty Project, at the 10th ISB Borneo Global Issues Conference in March where he "inspired delegates with a hunger to help the global eradication of Polio", as stated by Matthew Savage.
Polio is an infectious and potentially fatal disease which invades the nervous system and can cause irreversible paralysis and death. While it can strike anyone, the disease mainly affects children under five years old, and is still prevalent in several countries, including Pakistan, where vaccines funded through Polio Points will initially be targeted.
Polio Points have already attracted attention from the United Nations (UN), which has recently mobilised a new commitment to eradicate polio completely by 2015.
"We are so close," said Dr Steven Geraghty, Executive Principal of ISB, "and 99 per cent of the way there. ISB is proud to join with SCB and our partners on the ground to help conquer the final one per cent."
At present, students of ISB have already earned enough points to fund 435 vaccines which will help 435 children have a healthy future.
Neeraj Swaroop, SCB's Regional CEO for Southeast Asia said, "The Polio Points project is a perfect match with our 'Here For Good' brand promise. It is meaningful to put a promise and commitment behind a rewards system for students very much like how we, at the bank, globally are guided by our single underlying brand promise in all that we do."
Lai Pei Si, CEO of SCB Brunei, said she was truly excited to be part of what she calls an "important and meaningful project".
"Through this project, we will not only help fight and eradicate polio, we will also play a part in nurturing and moulding the students involved into good corporate and social citizens of the world, through their positive action," she said.
The event yesterday was also attended by the Deputy Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, Datin Paduka Hjh Adina binti Othman, whose ministry is also supporting this initiative.
--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin