Interholco: “How developing timber processing in Congo makes children aged 6 to 14 branch out to step up their growth”

The sixth International Day of Education was celebrated worldwide yesterday, under the theme “learning for lasting peace”.  During her visit to our subsidiary IFO (Industrie forestière de Ouesso) last 12 January, the Republic of Congo Minister for Forest Economy, Rosalie Matondo, took a close look at the company's activities, saying: ‘Wood processing is a transfer of technology. This helps our young people to learn on the job.’


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Ms Matondo also spent time with school pupils aged 6 to 14 in the library that IFO set up in the village of Ngombé. Herself a teacher at the School of Higher Forest Administration (ENSAF in French) in Congo and a researcher at the Center for Agricultural Research for Development (CIRAD) in France before taking up her public duties, Ms Matondo was delighted to see how students can thrive and develop even 800 km North of the capital.

'Think of our IFO library as a forest of knowledge,’ argues Audrey Mampouya, Chief librarian. Thanks to a project kicked off by IFO in 2023, sponsored by Danish wood importer 'Global Timber', school children can study and learn on 10 brand-new laptops and hundreds of the same books as in use in the expensive private schools of the capital Brazzaville.

In the Republic of Congo, the culture of peace, responsibility and coexistence was the focus of the Day: 'These young people won’t be well trained unless they are educated,' said Jean Médard, director of the Nganga Edouard high school in Brazzaville. An awareness-raising campaign targeted schools with the aim of creating responsible elites capable of becoming real players in the country's development.

In our library,’ concludes Patrick Geffroy, IFO’s Director General ‘we hope children will become citizens of the world, building the necessary curiosity to explore and confidently pursue their life passions.’

More information on the activities carried out in our library: Co-creating change for 1,300 children in Congo


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