The Malta Independent 25 September 2020, Friday

Coronavirus: €15,000 IIP scheme donation to students with no access to online learning – Alex Muscat

Karl Azzopardi Tuesday, 21 April 2020, 10:02 Last update: about 6 months ago

€15,000 from the Individuals Investment Programme (IIP) will be used to help fund digital devices and internet access for students who are facing financial difficulties with online learning, Parliamentary Secretary for Citizenship and Communities Alex Muscat said today.

He was speaking during a press conference on donations to aid vulnerable students and families in connection with online education.

He explained that the IIP scheme was set up for the benefit of society in its time of need and this is the case here where the government needs to ensure that less fortunate students can keep up with the curriculum as any other student.

“What we believe in is that no children coming from a disadvantaged financial background should find themselves in a position where they cannot keep learning.”

This financial aid is one of multiple donations that have been given to the Education Ministry after the call for funding that minister Owen Bonnici made last week.

Bonnici had announced that students who are registered under Scheme 9 will be given free internet access and a digital device on which to carry out their studies. This cost the ministry around €40,000 already yet this was still not enough.

Bonnici had said that he is giving up a month of this salary in order to support this measure while also appealing for any company and business out there to help the ministry in this mission.

Parliamentary Secretary Frank Fabri said that five companies have already reached out to them and today he announced two new donations. The first pertaining to a collaborative fund from Mr. Clean and Bad Boy Cleaners while the second being the aforementioned fund from the IIP scheme.

Bonnici explained that these donations will be used to fund 30 tablets for students in need. This not only includes students under Scheme 9 but also other families who have reached out to the ministry for help in this regard.

Asked how the ministry is assessing if those calling for help are genuine cases, Bonnici explained that there is a designated board of individuals who assess which cases are truly in need – “we want to ensure that these donations are being put to good use.”

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