Press Release


10 March 2009


Last year, students from Grove Park Business and Enterprise College, and Itchen College in Southampton travelled to Manila in the Philippines to build a children’s playground at a school in  the city, run by Hedge End based Philippines Community Fund.

Playground equipment donated by one of the UK’s foremost playground equipment manufacturers,  Playdale of Cumbria and building equipment including 600 sheets of plasterboard was shipped to the Philippines ahead of the group’s visit in February 2008.

The plasterboard, a gift from Corinthian Homes of Fareham and Elliotts the South Hampshire Builders Merchants, with Lafarge and British Gypsum will be used to line the walls of a new school, now nearing completion. The new school, is being constructed of 78 redundant shipping containers in the shadow of the infamous Smokey Mountain dumpsite, a short distance from the existing school located in a disused warehouse in the Tondo district of the capital.

This year, Itchen College has teamed up with The Sholing Technology College and Sholing Junior School to form The Sholing Campus Philippines Project 2010. A group of students from both colleges will travel out to the Philippines next February to build a second playground with elements once again generously donated by Playdale of Cumbria, this time at the site of the new school. Students and staff will also be engaged in fitting out some of the new classrooms, and helping to fit out and equip the new school.                .

Last month a fully loaded container, a generous gift  from APL left from Ready Steady Store in Eastleigh crammed full of materials destined for the new school. School tables and chairs, a gift from Hiltingbury Infants School in Chandlers Ford and Crofton Hammond Junior School in Stubbington with stationery products from Whitegrove and Fortis Insurance  will be welcome in Manila by a charity, struggling to deal with the world economic downturn and the rapid increase in commodity prices  especially rice.

The school, when completed is expected to make the Guinness Book of Records as the largest containerised structure in the world. The vast majority of the shipping containers have been provided by the shipping company, APL. With the plasterboard already in Manila, the group is now turning its attention to sourcing a significant quantity of flooring tiles and roofing materials to complete the task of providing much needed additional school places for some of the poorest children in the world.