The Pursuit of Partnerships
The UAP Old Mutual Group recognises its obligation to act for the benefit of society at large. Through the UAP Old Mutual Foundation, we understand the evolution of corporates undertaking social responsibility. The dynamics of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Corporate Social Investment (CSI) today looks at various dynamics today such as: partnerships to fund projects and staff engagement- to enhance the connection they make with the communities around them. The UAP Old Mutual Foundation had the opportunity to discuss this during an informative partners’ breakfast meeting on Wednesday 26th July 2017 in Nairobi. The Chairman, Dr Peter W. Muthoka, showcased the Foundation’s progress in executing its mandate as well as invite likeminded institutions to partner in the projects. He called onto the stage Deputy Secretary General, Abshiro Halake to give insight on the various experiences the Kenya Red Cross has gone through by leveraging on partnerships. “We should foster partnerships with each other as they help us create value and grow. Without partnerships the Kenya Red Cross would not be able to serve Kenyans as we are now. We are ready to support you as you continue impacting lives,” she said.
Some of the organisations represented included: Safaricom Foundation, Visa, Oiko Credit, Aga Khan University, Mastercard Foundation, Interswitch, Design Corporate, Dimension Data, Green Africa Foundation, Caritas MFB and Clinton Health. There were also representatives from the Foundation’s beneficiaries such as: Kenya Society for the Blind, Kenyatta National Hospital, Kenya Wildlife Service, Maisha Project, Eddah’s Hope Cancer Foundation, Africa Cancer Foundation, An Honest Intention and Starehe Boys Centre.
The challenge was given to the players of the private sector to look beyond profit and pursue purpose. “This undertaking is agreeably costly. Sectors such as healthcare require KES 324 billion annually to have the services improved. No institution can provide this financial support by itself,” Gerald Macharia, Vice President East and Southern Africa, Clinton Health stated. It is against the backdrop of such statistics that the Foundation is seeking to on board co-funders to undertake its projects centred on healthcare, education, environmental conservation and risk awareness.
Dr. Laibuta, Chairman of the Kenya Society for the Blind lauded the effort made by the Foundation in the special education sphere. Access to education for visually impaired children is something he holds close to his heart. He lost his sight at age 22 and underwent rehabilitation through Kenya Society for the Blind to enable him pursue his dream to be an advocate of the High Court of Kenya. “This should be the story for every visually impaired child; the tale of greatness in spite of the loss of sight.” He encouraged partnership amongst corporates to achieve greater leaps in special education. Over the past two years, the UAP Old Mutual Foundation has accomplished various projects under its key mandate. This includes: renovation of Kenyatta National Hospital Accidents & Emergency unit, provision of assistive devices for visually impaired students in 5 schools and tree planting engagements in Ndakaini and the Aberdare National Park. In 2016, the level of staff engagement was heightened with the Foundation investing in staff driven initiatives. Currently community initiatives across East Africa continue to be championed by the specific country. As the Group journeys through the various phases of integration, the Foundation looks forward to expanding its operation to the region to make a difference in the good company of all UAP Old Mutual staff.