09 March 2019

The British Council and HSBC Malaysia today officiated the Selangor Literacy Project 2019, which aims to create a love of reading in children in six primary schools across Selangor.

Sarah Deverall, Director Malaysia, British Council, and Tara Latini, Country Head of Retail Banking and Wealth Management, HSBC Malaysia, today formalised the partnership, witnessed by Dr Habibah binti Abdul Rahim, Deputy Director General of Education (Policy and Education Development), Ministry of Education Malaysia, representatives of Selangor State Education Department, as well as teachers, pupils and parents from participating schools. 

The project is run by the British Council in collaboration with the School Management Division, Ministry of Education Malaysia, together with the support of the Selangor Department of Education and is funded by HSBC. The Selangor Literacy Project falls under the banner of the ‘Highly Immersive Programme’ (HIP) and runs for six months. It reaches across six selected primary schools in Selangor: SK Desa Putra, SK Jenderam Hilir, SK Beranang, SK Kampung Rinching, SK Ulu Semenyih, and SJK(T) Ladang Semenyih.

‘Supporting English teaching and learning is at the heart of what the British Council does, so it is a great honour for us to be partnering with the School Management Division of the Ministry of Education on this project,’ said Sarah Deverall, Director Malaysia, British Council. ‘We are also very grateful to HSBC for their funding of the project, and the enthusiasm and energy their volunteers bring to the community events.’

‘This project aims to create a love of reading in children, but it also aims to do that in a sustainable way. That is why for us the training of teachers is crucial. Teachers need training and support if they are to make the changes that the Ministry of Education aspires to in the Education Blueprint. If we want high quality teaching, we need to give teachers the opportunity, time and support to develop, to try new approaches and prepare students for the global world,’ she added.

Following the signing ceremony, parents and children took part in a series of fun English activities organised and delivered by the teachers with enthusiastic support from HSBC volunteers.

Stuart Milne, Chief Executive Officer, HSBC Malaysia said of the project, ‘HSBC’s involvement in the Selangor Literacy Project 2019 is especially significant to us and it gives us great pride knowing that we are able to contribute to such a meaningful initiative. From 2011 to 2018, our initiatives targeted at enabling the education sector have benefitted more than 37,000 students and teachers in the country. This number showcases our long-term support to help people in the communities in which we operate to access education and training, which will allow them to acquire the skills they need to succeed in today’s workplace.’

‘HSBC is certainly looking forward to continue working with the Selangor government and the British Council to empower the future generation of Malaysia and boost their prospects for a promising future. Our investment in the Selangor Literacy Project 2019 reinforces our continued commitment to the future of Malaysia,’ he added.

The project will train 32 teachers, impact 3000 pupils and engage with 300 parents. Within the project, 32 English teachers from the six schools are given monthly training workshops; high quality and attractive storybooks from the UK are placed into the school libraries; and three half-day community events are run for parents and children to get immersed in reading and learning English. The project will run until May 2019.

The British Council has been working with Malaysia for over 70 years since 1948.