Telecommunications giant, Airtel Nigeria, says it is committed to creating opportunities that will drive positive impact across the various communities where it operates and also helps uplift more underprivileged people.
Speaking on Thursday, January 24th, 2019, during the kick-off of season 5 of its flagship Corporate Social Responsibility initiative, Airtel Touching Lives, Segun Ogunsanya, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Airtel Nigeria, said the telco is relentless in its vision to empower more underprivileged people as well as encourage other corporate organizations to support the disadvantaged.
“Since we launched the Airtel Touching Lives initiative four years ago, we have achieved remarkable success, having restored the hope of despaired individuals and families, saved many from the throes of death and empowered many underprivileged Nigerians. With the launch of season 5, we remain relentless in our vision to empower more people in the various communities where we operate and also inspire other corporate organizations to reach out to the underprivileged.”
He also urged the general public to be part of the initiative by nominating projects, persons and communities that require support. “We are calling on Nigerians to nominate causes and persons who require help. The process is simple. Once you nominate an individual or cause, our team will review and assess the situation and determine if a follow-up visit will be required. You can nominate individuals or projects in your communities by dialling 367 or by sending an SMS to the Shortcode, 367. You can also send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org Together, we all can make our society a better place if we collaborate to uplift the downtrodden around us.”
The nomination window for Season 5 of Airtel Touching Lives will close on Thursday, March 7th, 2019. Airtel Touching Lives is an inspiring corporate social responsibility initiative that seeks to offer practical relief, succour, hope, opportunities and credible platforms to liberate and empower the underprivileged, disadvantaged and hard to reach persons in our society.
The activities of Airtel Touching Lives are recorded and produced for national/international television with a view to promoting the spirit of giving, self-sacrifice and love among Nigerians.
Highlights of Past Season
Joy Musa and Family
Joy Musa had a big family and a happy life, but all that changed when insurgents came into her village on a killing spree. She lost her husband and two children in a 2013 insurgent attack on Dogo Nahawa in Jos, Plateau State. She also sustained major physical injuries as well as severe emotional scars from the attack. Wounds from the attack prevented her from working and living a normal life. Airtel came to her aid by renting and furnishing a two bedroom apartment for her and also offered a scholarship to her three surviving children as well as capital (N500,000.00) to start a small business.
Precious Ginikachi a young lady with a promising future was involved in a factory accident. Although her left hand was amputated following the accident, she was still determined in her pursuit as a bread winner for her aged parents. It wasn’t long before Airtel Touching lives intervened and presented her with well-furnished boutique stocked with female wears, exotic bags and other accessories. She was also presented with a 3.5kva generator to power the boutique
The Aina family lost three children to an inferno. They also lost their home and everything they had. However, Airtel intervened and, last year handed the family with an ultramodern and well-furnished two-bedroom apartment. Airtel also took responsibility for payment of all their outstanding bills in the hospital. A touching story, but the Aina needed to start from somewhere again.
Ophans in Nigeria
Imagine you had to sleep under a bridge or find shelter at night in a bus stop? This is the life that many street children in Lagos experience every day. For Azeez Rotimi, his life was this reality. At 14, his world was very different to what it is now. Through rehabilitation and loving care, he has been given a second chance with a scholarship for secondary school and University through the Airtel Touching Lives initiative
During the Airtel Touching Lives Season 2, there were several emotional stories of courage and hope. Hannah Enakerakpor suffered from a life-threatening disease. She had hole-in-the-heart from a tender age and this malediction threatened her life. Hannah was intelligent, charming, and beautiful and like other kids wanted to go to school and actualize her dreams. Through the Touching Lives programme, Hannah was handed a lifeline. Airtel Nigeria bankrolled her surgery in India and thankfully the surgery was very successful. Today she is living a healthy and happy life.
Blind Gbenga Adesida
Also in Season 2, we fulfilled our promise to many Nigerians including Adesida Gbenga, a blind man who lost custody of his children because he was homeless. A new apartment was built for him by Airtel so he could reunite with his family. The significance of this gesture cannot be overemphasized. Adesida returned to the warm embrace of his family and continued his life like every other normal person.
Essienkan Ebong, a former police officer lost his eyes to an armed robbery attack in 2013. All efforts to restore his sight proved abortive. Ebong, a graduate of computer science, with a PGD in Mathematics and MSc in Computer Science didn’t give up hope and neither did Airtel give up on him. Through the Touching Lives programme, Airtel came to his aid, providing him with a Braille Object Identification Scanner, a Braille Machine, Speech Software, an America skim guide and a brand new sophisticated, special laptop to help him actualize his dreams despite his disability. Today, Ebong is empowered and he is helping to empower other people in his immediate community.
Mbashie community in Makurdi, Benue State, is majorly made up of subsistence farmers and it had no source of water- inhabitants usually had to travel more than 30km on foot every day. There are many single mothers in the community and water is fetched daily by women and children. The children are unable to go to school to get an education while the women are unable to farm or bring in any income to help support their families. Airtel came to the aid of this community by providing a permanent solution to the water problem. Today, the women of Mbashie are more productive and children spend more time reading their books instead of going to look for where to fetch clean water.