In light of the coronavirus forcing the Eastern Caribbean’s education system to adjust to the online delivery of curriculum instruction, the Saint Lucia Electricity Services (LUCELEC) has partnered with the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Commission to procure tablets for schools across the region.
With the implementation of lockdowns and curfews to encourage physical distancing and curtail the spread of the coronavirus across the subregion, classes were administered through an online classroom environment.
“The OECS Commission recognises that the success of this approach to learning can only be realised if students are equipped with the requisite tools. The commission is, therefore, pleased to announce its partnership with Saint Lucia Electricity Services (LUCELEC). The company donated US$10,000.00 to supply tablets to schools across the region,” a press release from the OECS revealed.
Commenting on the contribution, Director General of the OECS Dr Didacus Jules underscored that it would help the regional body fulfil its COVID-19 response, which is to supplement national efforts in member states by helping to fill gaps where they exist. For this reason, he expressed gratitude to LUCELEC for their contribution to support the regional education initiative.
Dr Jules indicated further that the OECS is seeking to undertake joint procurement of tablets and other learning devices in order to help bridge the digital divide and reduce the cost of purchase to member states. The director general also believes that joint procurement will considerably reduce the cost per unit of tablets and equipment. He has, therefore, committed any contributions received from the private sector by the OECS to the overall procurement cost to further reduce the per unit costs to governments.
“The private sector in the region has always stepped up in times of national or regional crisis to support and take care of their employees and their communities,” Jules noted.
“We are certain they will do whatever is within their means to do, bearing in mind this crisis and its impact on the private sector [and] national economies, and the region is still unfolding. How we all come out of this will require a collective and coordinated effort at all levels,” he continued.
According to Managing Director of LUCELEC Trevor Louisy, says this gesture of goodwill is in keeping with his company’s inclusive growth strategy.
“We exist as part of a community. Our Power of Caring is not just a slogan. It’s an integral part of our value system and culture that shapes how we do business and how we relate to our various stakeholders. So, we’re totally invested in this collective challenge that is COVID-19 and how we respond as a part of the local business community, the country and the region,” Louisy stated.
He also encouraged other private sector entities to be part of the regional effort to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The private sector in the region has always stepped up in times of national or regional crisis to support and take care of their employees and their communities. We are certain they will do whatever is within their means to do, bearing in mind this crisis and its impact on the private sector, national economies and the region is still unfolding. How we all come out of this will require a collective and coordinated effort at all levels.”