Following December 2004’s devastating tsunami, we set up the WACKER relief fund. Its board of directors and board of trustees work on an honorary basis, supplying unbureaucratic and long-term assistance to the victims of natural disasters. WACKER has always made a point of matching its employees’ donations.
In the Sri Lankan community of Kosgoda, WACKER’s relief fund and another German organization (the Augsburger Malteser Hilfswerk) jointly built a school block, where teaching began in 2006. As well as supporting construction work, our relief fund supplied extra financing in 2007 and 2008 to cover school uniforms, teaching materials and six teachers’ salaries. As a result, we funded the education of 75 children in 2007 and 55 in 2008 (from grade two through to grade five). The classrooms we financed are part of an educational complex in a large UNESCO residential project. Since sustainable aid is one of our key objectives, we intend to continue sponsoring the Kosgoda school in the years to come.
Another Sri Lankan project we support is at Pilane, where the Little Smile charity is having a vocational center built. 2007 saw the completion of the center’s first building. Named after WACKER’s relief fund, this main building houses classrooms and administrative offices, as well as areas to display and sell trainees’ handicraft and art work. In 2008, work started on constructing workshops and a hostel for trainees and trainers.
In May 2008, news of an earthquake in China’s southwestern Sichuan province shocked the world. WACKER donated €50,000 to the WACKER relief fund as emergency aid and then matched the sum given by employees. In total, donations for the earthquake victims exceeded €100,000. The relief fund and our WACKER Greater China subsidiary decided to use the money to fully rebuild a 240-student Sichuan school. To be renamed “Fujia Village WACKER Primary School,” it should be ready in time for the 2009/2010 school year.