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Prime Minister to Present the 100,000th KidsCan Raincoat

Prime Minister to Present the 100,000th KidsCan Raincoat

To mark the milestone of 100,000 raincoats provided to lower decile schools around New Zealand the KidsCan Charitable Trust has invited the Prime Minister the Rt Hon John Key, Minister of Social Development the Hon Paula Bennett and National List MP Alfred Ngaro to make the presentation to a lucky pupil at Lincoln Heights School in the Auckland suburb of Massey.

The Ministry of Social Development has been a significant supporter of KidsCans programmes since 2009, providing funding to improve the educational prospects of our children in decile 1 to 4 schools. This contribution, along with corporate sponsorship, donations from organisations such as Pub Charity and over 5,000 individual ‘In Our Own Backyard’ supporters has enabled the trust to provide 100,000 coats for children in 320 schools across New Zealand.

“Providing raincoats can be a financial struggle for lower income families with many children kept home when it rains,” says KidsCan CEO Julie Chapman. “Those who do go to school turn up wet and freezing cold, which makes it very difficult to focus and participate in class. Our partner schools tell us children without coats get sick more often which increases absenteeism.”

The KidsCan ‘Raincoats for Kids’ programme reduces absenteeism and helps to build self-esteem and a culture of belonging at school. Massey University research found there is no stigma associated with the raincoats and children take very good care of them. Some even sleep in them as it is the warmest item of clothing they own. There are also many examples of the raincoats reducing social differences as less fortunate children now look the same as their peers and can attend activities as a unified group.

The Principal of Lincoln Heights School, Debbie Waikato, is just one of the many school principals who have expressed their gratitude and appreciation for the practical support KidsCan provides.

“We are a school focused on bringing out the best in each of our children and helping them to reach new heights in their educational journey,” says Debbie Waikato. “KidsCan helps children meet their potential by reducing barriers to attendance, engagement and learning. Our school truly appreciates the generosity of KidsCan and its partners - they are really making a difference for our children and their futures.”

KidsCan runs three other programmes; 'Food for Kids' which supports 12,500 hungry children a week, 'Shoes for Kids’, with 20,000 pairs being given out this year and ’Health for Kids’, which targets head lice, skin infections and provides funding for prescription medicine. KidsCan has been operating since 2005 and was founded by Julie Chapman.

Link to KidsCan website www.kidscan.org.nz/our-work/raincoats-for-kids

ENDS

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