Swiss tennis star Roger Federer has launched a project in Malawi to support early childhood education for 54,000 children between four and six years of age over the next ten years.
“As a father of two little girls, I see every day how children can learn incredibly quickly if their environment is stimulating,” the world number three, whose mother is South African, said in a statement on Tuesday.
“It’s a great privilege for me and for my foundation to help give children in Malawi a chance to fulfil their potential.”
The SFr7 million ($8.45 million) programme is to be set up with the Malawi branch of the humanitarian organisation Action Aid. The Federer Foundation says the aim is to improve the quality and care and education in 80 community-based childcare centres.
The centres will offer child friendly, clean and safe infrastructure. The money will also go to train educators and sensitise parents to the educational needs of their children.
Malawi is one of the poorest countries in Africa. Half of the 13 million inhabitants live under the poverty line and more than three million children under the age of eight are chronically malnourished.
Founded in 2003, the Roger Federer Foundation helps almost 20,000 children in Tanzania, Malawi, Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, South Africa as well as in Switzerland.
swissinfo.ch and agencies