KONKOLA Copper Mines (KCM) yesterday awarded scholarships to 41 pupils in Government schools for their high achievements in Grade 7 and 9 national examinations.
The students received scholarship certificates from permanent secretary for the Copperbelt Reverend Howard Sikwela.
Speaking during the awards presentation ceremony in Chingola, Rev Sikwela said the programme provided valuable support for the Government’s focus on provision of quality education to all Zambians.
“I am encouraged that KCM is providing these scholarships for students who, in some cases, may not have been able to continue with their education without this assistance.”
Rev. Sikwela said the KCM policy was aligned with Government plans to foster public private partnerships to ensure broader development goals were achieved, particularly through youth empowerment.
Forty-one pupils received full sponsorships – from Grade 8 to 9 for those who passed with high grades in the Grade 7 national exams and Grade 10 to 12 for the Grade 9 high achievers.
The pupils awarded are from Government schools in Kitwe, Chingola, Chililabombwe and Shibuyunji.
The scholarships cover the full payment of schools fees and purchase of school uniforms and other requirements.
They were part of the company’s support for high potential students and the development of future leaders in industry and Government. KCM has in the last six years provided scholarships to 250 pupils in Government schools under this programme.
The company also runs the Nchanga and Konkola Trust schools that cater for slightly over 2,100 pupils.
KCM general manager corporate Services Howard Chilundika said the company supported the education of young people as a part of its long term commitment to education on the Copperbelt.
“KCM has a 50-year vision for its operations in the Copperbelt, so we believe it is important to invest in the leaders of tomorrow,” Mr Chilundika said.
“Youth Week is an ideal time to reflect upon the importance of our young people. Mining requires billions of dollars to be spent on facilities, equipment and machinery”.
He said, however, “in the end the success of those investments comes down to the skills of our people”.
“I am sure that many of the leaders of our business are sitting in front of me today, and we are delighted to be able to assist them in the continuation of their education,” he said.