'Coca-Cola ed.venture' Launched at Malacanang Palace

* Initiative to Support President's Vision to Bridge

Digital Divide in the Country



* Ten Thousand Filipino Youth to Experience New World of Fun And

Adventure as Project Brings IT Opportunities to Philippines Public Schools



* Coca-Cola Commits 17.5 Million Pesos to Kick Off Project



Apr 04, 2001, 01:00 ET from The Coca-Cola Company

    MANILA, The Philippines, April 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Heralding a bold, new era
 in its community endeavours in the Philippines, The Coca-Cola Company
 (NYSE:   KO) today launched a groundbreaking initiative that will spearhead
 efforts to bridge the 'digital divide' in the country.
     In partnership with the Manila-based Foundation for Information Technology
 Education and Development (FIT-ED), a non-governmental organization
 established to increase IT awareness in the Philippines, Coca-Cola will bring
 e-learning opportunities and IT training resources to teachers and less
 advantaged young people in the country.
     The initiative, called "Coca-Cola ed.venture", was officially launched
 today at Malacanang Palace at a signing ceremony hosted by President Gloria
 Macapagal-Arroyo.
     Mr. Jim Harting, President, Coca-Cola Philippines and the Honourable
 Roberto Romulo, Chairman of FIT-ED and Senior Presidential Advisor,
 International Competitiveness, signed the memorandum of understanding between
 the two organisations.  The signing was witnessed and endorsed by Philippines
 Education Secretary Raul Roco and Mr. Sandy Allan, President and COO, Coca-
 Cola Asia.
     President Arroyo said, "Finding ways to bridge the growing digital divide
 between IT 'haves' and IT 'have-nots' is an immense developmental challenge
 for the Philippines and a top priority of my administration.  The partnership
 between Coca-Cola and FIT-ED represents an innovative effort to help close the
 digital gap in our country."
     Coca-Cola has initially committed 17.5 million pesos (US$350,000) to cover
 the first year costs of the program, which will build on the success of its
 Little Red Schoolhouse Project, its long-running rural education initiative.
 The funds will be used to provide state of the art, Internet-ready computer
 labs for up to ten thousand children aged between thirteen to seventeen in ten
 public secondary/high schools; training for 500 teachers to be conducted by
 experts in information communication technology under the terms of the
 agreement between Coca-Cola and FIT-ED, and provide the opportunity for
 telecollaboration between the networked schools.
     "Coca-Cola ed.venture is part of our continuing commitment to foster
 opportunities for Filipino youth and to actively contribute to the development
 of the local communities we serve," said Mr. Sandy Allan, President and Chief
 Operating Officer, Coca-Cola Asia.
     "Our partnership with FIT-ED represents an exciting new chapter in our
 community commitment in the Philippines -- a commitment we've built up over
 almost 75 years of being part of the Philippine fabric of life.  We're looking
 forward to inspiring and empowering a new generation of teachers and students
 through Information Technology in line with the government's national
 development vision".
     These "Coca-Cola ed.venture centers" will provide a dynamic and fun
 environment in which students will be trained in IT skills.  The "Coca-Cola
 ed.venture center" will also open its facilities for local community use at
 designated periods.
     The first "Coca-Cola ed.venture center" is set to roll out in June.  Luli
 Macapagal Arroyo, Program Director, FIT-ED; Vicki Tinio, Manager, Pilipinas
 SchoolNet;  and JB Baylon, Director for External Affairs, Coca-Cola
 Philippines will be the lead coordinators of the project.
     Since 1997, the Coca-Cola Little Red Schoolhouse program has provided
 teacher training to scores of public high schools teachers and has also
 delivered quality education facilities to underprivileged children in rural
 areas.
     The Coca-Cola ed.venture centers will be built in 'sister' public high
 schools to existing and future Little Red Schoolhouses, providing greater
 educational resources for those local communities.
     The launch of Coca-Cola ed.venture is part of a regional initiative by The
 Coca-Cola Company to help bridge the digital divide in Asia Pacific.  Coca-
 Cola ed.venture will be followed by similar initiatives in China and Malaysia
 that will be introduced later this year.
 
 

SOURCE The Coca-Cola Company
    MANILA, The Philippines, April 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Heralding a bold, new era
 in its community endeavours in the Philippines, The Coca-Cola Company
 (NYSE:   KO) today launched a groundbreaking initiative that will spearhead
 efforts to bridge the 'digital divide' in the country.
     In partnership with the Manila-based Foundation for Information Technology
 Education and Development (FIT-ED), a non-governmental organization
 established to increase IT awareness in the Philippines, Coca-Cola will bring
 e-learning opportunities and IT training resources to teachers and less
 advantaged young people in the country.
     The initiative, called "Coca-Cola ed.venture", was officially launched
 today at Malacanang Palace at a signing ceremony hosted by President Gloria
 Macapagal-Arroyo.
     Mr. Jim Harting, President, Coca-Cola Philippines and the Honourable
 Roberto Romulo, Chairman of FIT-ED and Senior Presidential Advisor,
 International Competitiveness, signed the memorandum of understanding between
 the two organisations.  The signing was witnessed and endorsed by Philippines
 Education Secretary Raul Roco and Mr. Sandy Allan, President and COO, Coca-
 Cola Asia.
     President Arroyo said, "Finding ways to bridge the growing digital divide
 between IT 'haves' and IT 'have-nots' is an immense developmental challenge
 for the Philippines and a top priority of my administration.  The partnership
 between Coca-Cola and FIT-ED represents an innovative effort to help close the
 digital gap in our country."
     Coca-Cola has initially committed 17.5 million pesos (US$350,000) to cover
 the first year costs of the program, which will build on the success of its
 Little Red Schoolhouse Project, its long-running rural education initiative.
 The funds will be used to provide state of the art, Internet-ready computer
 labs for up to ten thousand children aged between thirteen to seventeen in ten
 public secondary/high schools; training for 500 teachers to be conducted by
 experts in information communication technology under the terms of the
 agreement between Coca-Cola and FIT-ED, and provide the opportunity for
 telecollaboration between the networked schools.
     "Coca-Cola ed.venture is part of our continuing commitment to foster
 opportunities for Filipino youth and to actively contribute to the development
 of the local communities we serve," said Mr. Sandy Allan, President and Chief
 Operating Officer, Coca-Cola Asia.
     "Our partnership with FIT-ED represents an exciting new chapter in our
 community commitment in the Philippines -- a commitment we've built up over
 almost 75 years of being part of the Philippine fabric of life.  We're looking
 forward to inspiring and empowering a new generation of teachers and students
 through Information Technology in line with the government's national
 development vision".
     These "Coca-Cola ed.venture centers" will provide a dynamic and fun
 environment in which students will be trained in IT skills.  The "Coca-Cola
 ed.venture center" will also open its facilities for local community use at
 designated periods.
     The first "Coca-Cola ed.venture center" is set to roll out in June.  Luli
 Macapagal Arroyo, Program Director, FIT-ED; Vicki Tinio, Manager, Pilipinas
 SchoolNet;  and JB Baylon, Director for External Affairs, Coca-Cola
 Philippines will be the lead coordinators of the project.
     Since 1997, the Coca-Cola Little Red Schoolhouse program has provided
 teacher training to scores of public high schools teachers and has also
 delivered quality education facilities to underprivileged children in rural
 areas.
     The Coca-Cola ed.venture centers will be built in 'sister' public high
 schools to existing and future Little Red Schoolhouses, providing greater
 educational resources for those local communities.
     The launch of Coca-Cola ed.venture is part of a regional initiative by The
 Coca-Cola Company to help bridge the digital divide in Asia Pacific.  Coca-
 Cola ed.venture will be followed by similar initiatives in China and Malaysia
 that will be introduced later this year.
 
 SOURCE  The Coca-Cola Company