VEB.RF Wins the ADFIAP Contest for an Educational Project in Yakutia

VEB.RF has won the contest organised by the Association of Development Financing Institutions in Asia and the Pacific (ADFIAP) in the Corporate Social Responsibility category for implementation of the Improving Educational Achievements of Schoolchildren in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) social impact project in the Russian Far East.

Pursuant to a Decree issued by the Government of the Russian Federation, VEB.RF acts as an operator of social impact projects in Russia over the entire pilot testing period through 2024. The Far East and Arctic Region Development Fund (FEDF affiliated with VEB.RF Group) serves as the actual organiser of the educational project supported by the Government of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia).

The project was launched in June 2019 as an endeavour to secure the goals of the “Education” national project and involves 5,000 schoolchildren and over 700 teachers from 27 schools of the Khangalassky Ulus municipal district.  

“The mechanism behind social impact projects combines individual initiative, mobilisation of private investments, and, most importantly, focus on a specific effect. This is a brand new approach to important social issues. The educational project in Yakutia is the first social impact project in Russia aiming at improving schoolchildren’s educational achievements by 10% and their performance in All-Russian school competitions. We expect enthusiastic participation in this type of projects on the part of the regions and hope to launch at least 30 social impact projects in diverse social areas by 2024, raising up to RUB 3 bln in total investment. Implementation of social projects prioritises the specific change and effect secured thereby over the simple fact of service provision”, said Svetlana Yachevskaya, Deputy Chairman of VEB.RF.

National Research University Higher School of Economics has been selected to implement the project. During the project implementation, its leading specialists administer additional training of management teams and educators, schoolchildren, both in person and remotely, facilitate establishment of professional learning communities, and contribute to management culture development by using available data. Parents and local communities are involved in the project on par with schoolchildren, educators, school and local government administrators.

FEDF will allocate up to RUB 60 mln to National Research University Higher School of Economics for the project implementation. Should the intended effect be secured by 2022, the project customer (the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia)) will pay a grant to the organiser as a subsidy to reimburse the expenses.

The project has an important requirement: it is necessary to create a model ensuring that teachers and local administrators are able to develop their educational system independently upon completion of the project using the experience and innovations introduced during implementation. That is the reason why reliance on local human resources is among the fundamental principles of the project. The activities are carried out in close partnership with the best specialists and competence centres of the Khangalassky Ulus municipal district and the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia).

During the first year of the project, over 900 persons, including parents, Grades 7 and 9 students, directors, and teachers took part in the learning and educational activities; schoolchildren’s individual academic progress in Russian and mathematics was monitored; Grades 4, 6, 7, and 8 students were tested, every teacher and schoolchild was provided with recommendations on ways to improve educational performance. In addition, all teachers were tested. The analytical School Profile was developed.

This year, VEB.RF has won the ADFIAP contest in two categories: apart from the Corporate Social Responsibility category, the state corporation has been named the winner in the Regional Economic Development category. Thus, VEB.RF has already won six prizes from the ADFIAP. For instance, in 2016, VEB earned a special certificate For Excellence in Introduction of Sustainable Development Principles in Corporate Practices as a reward for development of the Sustainable Development Roadmap; in May 2016, VEB was named the winner in the Infrastructure Development category for its involvement in the Boguchany Dam construction project;  in 2014, VEB earned a certificate for the Best Industrial or Infrastructure Development Project Based on Sustainable Development Principles as a reward for its involvement in the construction and reconstruction of small hydroelectric power plants in Karelia; VEB Group’s 2011 sustainable development report was named the winner of the ADFIAP contest in the Best Sustainable Development Report category.

The Association of Development Financing Institutions in Asia and the Pacific (ADFIAP) was founded in 1976. Today, this is a major international association of development institutions including 131 organisations from 45 countries. VEB.RF has been a full member of ADFIAP since 2013 and is represented in the ADFIAP Board of Directors. The Association focuses on coordination of development financing institutions’ efforts to promote social and economic development in the countries of the region.