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Scholarships empower small and women-owned businesses in the fight against Covid-19
As the world faces ongoing pandemic-related uncertainty, Kimberly-Clark Professional continues to empower essential heroes working behind the scenes in the cleaning industry to help keep people and businesses as safe as possible.
Last year, in collaboration with ISSA and the Global Biorisk Advisory Council, (a Division of ISSA) Kimberly-Clark Professional donated $500,000 to fund specialised scholarships for the GBAC ‘Fundamentals Online Course: Cleaning & Disinfection Principles’, to provide critical training to small and women-owned businesses around the world. This expansive effort has now touched six continents and hundreds of cities, from New York to New Delhi.
To date, the initiative has provided 6,131 scholarships in 84 countries, and helped 3,900 organisations prepare their workers with GBAC-led training that helps them provide their employees and customers with a welcoming and hygienic workplace. In addition, the program set a goal to award 50% of scholarships to women, a target that the program is close to achieving.
"A lot of our clients closed down and we were not sure how to move forward," explains Brandi Harper, CEO, Haylo Window Cleaning. "The Kimberly-Clark Professional GBAC Scholarship Program provided us an opportunity that we would not have had and allowed us to train our staff, send our technicians in the field and help our clients.”
The scholarship has allowed Brandi’s family-owned cleaning company to pivot its focus to supporting new customers, including Furlow Charter School in Americus, GA.
The GBAC Fundamentals Online Course is focused on prevention, response and control measures for biohazards in the workplace - with a special emphasis on infection- and contamination-control measures for infectious disease outbreak situations such as SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for Covid-19.
The Kimberly-Clark Professional GBAC Scholarship program assists cleaning professionals, often the unsung heroes of the pandemic, for their critical work maintaining facilities like hospitals and senior care homes, as well as community recovery efforts. This program provides access to advanced education to those who may not have otherwise been able to fund this training for their employees. Since launch, it has funded 2,694 small businesses and supported their efforts to operate confidently during the pandemic.
Susan Gambardella, president, Kimberly-Clark Professional North America, explains:
"In our industry, we know better than most the hard work and dedication it takes to be a cleaning professional, especially during this crisis.
"We wanted to empower our heroes working tirelessly behind the scenes as they help critical businesses run safely."
John Barrett, executive director, ISSA, says: "We are proud to partner with the team at Kimberly-Clark Professional. Early on in the pandemic, it realised the importance of such a program to empower cleaning professionals across the globe with fundamental knowledge of cleaning, disinfection and infection prevention. While their work might be done behind the scenes, these workers' commitment and focus have made a tremendous impact by providing healthy and safe work environments for all workers."
Kimberly-Clark Professional's ongoing scholarship program will continue to provide GBAC certification to small organisations that meet program criteria. Scholarships are still available for cleaning professionals.
To apply for a scholarship or to get more information, visit:
11th March 2021