Uganda: Alain Goetz Urges Businesses to Support Schools

10 September 2020

With schools and churches still under lockdown, Alain Goetz, the founder and former chief executive officer of African Gold, has called on the business community to support some of these institutions.

In a statement, African Gold Refinery said Goetz created a strong corporate social responsibility culture at the company, which placed the community ahead of profit.

"I have always placed people at the centre of the businesses I run. It is important that businesses support the communities where they operate. I am happy that AGR has continued with that spirit of helping those in need," Goetz said in a statement.

Goetz is credited for supporting Mapeera primary school, Entebbe, by financing the roofing of some of the classroom blocks.

Father Joseph Sebbaiga, the former parish priest of Entebbe Catholic parish, where Mapeera Primary School falls, recalls how African Gold Refinery chipped in to support the school.

"I remember they came here and asked me what they could do for the community. I gave them two choices - to support children living positively with HIV or the handicapped children at the welfare school. They chose the welfare school," Sebbaiga said.

Entebbe Children's Welfare primary school, another project that Goetz supports, caters for children with special needs. Due to its limited finances, it relies heavily on well-wishers.

"When I approached them asking for help, they asked what I was constructing. After, they agreed to meet part of the costs of the structure," Sebbaiga said, in reference to AGR's support towards Mapeera primary school.

School administrators are already on the wall, with many teachers now going for months without salaries. Projects such as the construction of certain blocks are bound to be put on hold as schools look for survival means.

Already some schools have closed while others have slashed their tuition fees, some by a half. It is for this reason that Goetz feels that the business community needs to come in and support a foundation he defines as "the future of our children."

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