Bruce Plested is Chairman for the ‘Duffy Books in Homes’ Charitable Foundation, which provides five new books to participating students, with the aim of developing better education and a love of reading in children. One of the main sponsors for this programme is Mainfreight. Since the initial relationship, in which Mainfreight sponsored books which were given to children in low decile schools, the firm has increased its support of the programme and has become a major sponsor of the literacy initiative.
In addition to sponsoring 54 of the 541 schools involved in the programme, Mainfreight provides a rent-free office, allowing the charity to direct more of its funding towards books which make their way into the hands of more than 100,000 children in low-income communities nationwide.
One of Mainfreight’s most anticipated contributions to the Duffy programme is the annual Mainfreight Award for Excellence in Attitude.
Each year a senior student in each Duffy school is awarded a high quality reference book, cup and certificate signed by Bruce Plested, Mainfreight’s Executive Chairman. Many schools choose to make this their major end of year prize for departing students.
This year’s book prize is The Complete Human Body – The Definitive Visual Guide by Dr. Alice Roberts. The book uses computer-generated illustrations and the latest medical and microscopic imaging to explain every aspect of the human body more clearly than ever before.
Representatives from Mainfreight, Daily Freight, Owens and Chemcouriers are invited to visit schools and help present the award – an opportunity which they all relish.
Linda Vagana, General Manager of Duffy Books in Homes believes that Mainfreight’s support has been a cornerstone of the charity’s success. “Mainfreight’s amazing success as a company over the years makes them the ideal supporter of such an award – promoting excellence and awarding our future young leaders in Duffy schools nationwide,” she said.
Since the official launch in 1995 with 80 schools, 16,000 students and 14 sponsors, the Duffy Books in Homes programme has grown to encompass 541 schools, around 100,000 students and more than 200 sponsors in 2011. More than seven million books have been distributed to children in low-decile schools since its inception and the programme now distributes more than 600,000 books annually.