Nippon Paint China’s CSR program marks 10 years of service
Published: Dec 16, 2019 10:08 AM

CEO of Nipsea Group Wee Siew Kim (center), president of Jinxing Primary School Luo Ying (left) and the Japanese designer Homma Takafumi at the school Photo: Courtesy of Nippon Paint China

A more than half an hour's walk on the mud road all the way up the hill, the Jinxing Primary School has stood for 16 years, converted from a thatched house.

Although the school expanded in size, thanks to donations from different people and groups, more attention from the outside world is still needed. Most of the children at Jinxing Primary School are ethnic minority groups who are left at home by their parents making a living in other cities. This humble place becomes both their school and home.

It is still about a week until Christmas, but the children at Jinxing Primary School, Xichang, Southwest China's Sichuan Province were expected to meet with two Santa Clauses on Monday, who came a long way from Singapore and Japan to bring them gifts and laughter.

This could be a rare occasion for the children, but not to their jolly guests.

Dressed in festive of Santa Claus costumes, the CEO of Nipsea Group Wee Siew Kim and his friend a famous Japanese interior designer Homma Takafumi are expected to spend a special day with the children on Tuesday when the CSR program of Nipsea Group's subsidiary Nippon Paint China and its CSR partner Jack Ma Foundation considered the school eligible for aid and support. 

This year, the program sees its 10th year of anniversary. Since its launch in 2009, Nippon Paint China's "Color, Way of Love" project has reached out to 342 schools in China by repainting campuses, building art classrooms and bringing in the company's employees, artists and volunteers to inspire the students. The goal of this program is to change the students' learning environment and ultimately changing how they see the world. 

Starting by visiting rural schools, building schools, and beautifying and refurbishing them, the volunteers of the Nippon Paint China have also learned a lot along the way. There are university students, business partners that come to help them broaden the program. Meanwhile, they also developed an art class, which does not just inspire children through color, but also links them with the outside world. 

"We brought the global artists who paint school walls and tell them that if they do well and work hard, the whole world is an oyster that you should go out and see," Wee said.

Students put their handprints on a sidewall of the school building. Photo: Courtesy of Nippon Paint China

With the support of Nippon Paint China's regional employees and stakeholders, every target school will be revisited by the company's volunteers, making sure the schools in need always receive help and assistance.

Looking back ten years ago, when they conceived the program, Wee said that the principle that drove them is still there. "We continue to learn and work with our partners, but I think we must stay true to our program, which is to continue to contribute to society, and focus on children and their education, and do the things that we do well, which are color, art and design," he said.

"Through our resources, we bring our partners and architects and interior designers," Wee said.

Now the "Color, Way of Love" program has become a CSR platform with 56 cooperative partners. Each of them has different resources.

"We try to challenge our people as well about what else can we do," Wee said. "Where we do well, we can always do more."