19 August 2009
2010 Fifa World Cup sponsor Coca-Cola is to give 20 000 tickets for World Cup matches to schools across South Africa that do well in an innovative competition that promotes environmental awareness.
The National Schools Recycling Programme, carried out in partnership with the Department of Education, will also encourage learners to collect bottles and cans for recycling.
The competition will be launched in January 2010, and the handing over of the free tickets to the winning schools will take place before the start of the tournament.
Coca-Cola South Africa’s Onwell Msomi said the initiative was intended to make teachers and students aware of the importance of recycling for the environment, and to reward innovation and responsible behaviour.
A total of 200 schools in the country will be rewarded with World Cup tickets.
“We strongly support this initiative,” Department of Education chief director Themba Kojana said in Pretoria this week. “Environmental education is very high on our list of priorities, and the importance of recycling of products must be emphasised at an early age.”
Successful Confed Cup pilot
Msomi said a successful pilot project had already been launched at two schools in Rustenburg in South Africa’s North West province, where Coca-Cola’s “Soccer Crazy Crew” was sent to promote the importance of recycling.
Within a month, 67 863 plastic bottles were collected for recycling, and learners from the schools were rewarded with tickets to watch the Confederations Cup match between South Africa and Spain at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium.
“There was great enthusiasm among participating schools, Charora High School and Boikagong Secondary School, and it has given us the confidence to extend this idea across the country,” Msomi said.
Fifa allocated the World Cup tickets to Coca-Cola as part of its Ticket Fund initiative, through which 120 000 tickets will be given to stadium construction workers and thousands of young South Africans involved in community programmes.