Presented by B.S.P. General Manager Taituuga Maryann Lameko-Vaai, the community project is an initiative that is implemented across the Pacific region, in all the countries that B.S.P. trades in. For the year 2017, the theme is Empowering Women and Children so B.S.P. Samoa chose to partner with S.V.S.G.
"As an organisation, part of our culture is to be fully engaged and committed to the wellness of the communities that we operate in. This project is one of the many ways that we show Samoa and the Pacific that, B.S.P. cares and we have a social responsibility to give back to the community," said Taitu'uga.
Through this partnership, B.S.P. found an avenue to assist with S.V.S.G.'s current activities by securing a booth at the Fugalei market to sell goods produced from their Nofotane project. A new kitchen was also built at the S.V.S.G. School of Hope.
"In our discussions with Siliniu Lina, she explained that the kitchen and cooking facilities were not ideal for the residents of this campus. So today I am pleased to hand over a new kitchen and cooking facilities as an extension to the fale Samoa, to encourage the young girls and children to assist with cooking and chores and perhaps work on their culinary skills and maybe become chefs in the future," said Maryann Lameko-Vaai.
The project involved a cleaning bee by the staff and management of B.S.P. last Saturday to assist with chores around the campus as well as painting and cementing around the kitchen and dining area. The bank also held a financial literacy workshop earlier this week where 26 participants from the Nofotane project attended. The focus of the workshop was basic skills in understanding banking, budgeting to save money and financial management.
B.S.P. sought the help of Zheng Construction to help build and relocate the kitchen, and Accident Compensation Corporation who provided an available booth for the Nofotane to sell their products. Handicrafts and goods produced from the Nofotane Project are currently being displayed at the S.V.S.G. office only.
The total cost of the project came down to $23,000.00 to build the new kitchen and relocate kitchen fittings from the School's main house as well as securing the booth at Fugalei Market.
This year has seen BSP give back to the community through projects like these. In May, staff donated food items and clothing to Goshen Trust, S.V.S.G. and Ola Toefuataina (Tafaigata Prison). In August, they contributed to the Two Million Trees Campaign. These are just some of the many community projects that B.S.P. has rolled out this year.