As Airtel boosts VODA Women…


MD says ‘a clean home is a healthy home’

January 30, 2015 By Hassan Gbassay Koroma

Managing Director of Airtel Sierra Leone says he is inspired by work done by a local group which promotes healthcare in the country because “a clean home is healthy home”.

Speaking while donating cleaning materials worth millions Leones to Volunteers for Development Association (VODA), a group of women who clean the streets of Freetown, Sudipto Chowdhury noted that under Airtel’s ‘Touching Lives’ initiative they reach out to people in the country through women who volunteer to serve the nation by sweeping and keeping the city clean. This, he said, is significant because health is one of core pillars of their core corporate social responsibilities.

He said hygiene is of the essence in the country, not least because of the Ebola outbreak, as a clean environment is essential to keeping the virus at bay.

“I have worked in many countries but here in Sierra Leone I see women are voluntarily cleaning the city without them being paid, which shows that they have their country at heart and they are ready to contribute to the development of their nation. This donation is just a start; Airtel family has big plans for you people,” said Chowdhury at the conference hall of the Ministry of Social Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs.

Also, Minister of Social Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs, Alhaji Moijueh Kaikai, said VODA women commenced cleaning the streets of Freetown in 2007, according to him, to complement the ‘Agenda for Change’ without receiving any payment.

He revealed that the women, who number 550, are contributing greatly to nation building, and encouraged them to continue the hard work to inspire other women.

“Airtel has helped a lot in the Ebola virus disease fight since it broke out in May 2014 by donating money to the government and sharing food items to quarantined homes, and now they are planning to help Ebola orphans in the country which means they are not only in the country to do business but to contribute to the development of the nation,” said Alhaji Kaikai.

Airtel donated 550 long rubber gloves to the women, plus 27,050 facial masks, 110 shovels, 550 brooms, 550 aprons and 25 wheelbarrows to aid them in their cleaning exercise.