As part of its Corporate Social Investment strategy, integrated telecommunications service provider Telkom Kenya Limited has today flagged off relief food valued at $ 63,830 to the people of Laisamis and West Pokot.
According to the company’s Chief Executive Officer, Mickael Ghossein, the food distribution process, which is being done is association with World Vision, will target over 600 families that will get emergency food rations over the next three months.
This maiden distribution project will concentrate on the Pokot and Laisamis areas, more specifically to the residents of Orwa, Kamurio, Nyonyangalem, and Nasolot areas, which have recorded the lowest ever rain levels in the country this year. The food rations include pulses, dry cereals and maize flour.
Recent reports from the famine early warning system network (FEWSNET); Kenya and the entire horn of Africa region is facing its worst drought in about 60 years. The current drought is severe and has led to the declaration of a national drought disaster in Kenya; millions of livestock are at risk of dying, while food production has been adversely affected.
“Orange is a people centric organisation; and therefore we endeavour to support the ongoing government and corporate initiatives aimed at addressing the famine situation both in the immediate and long term.” said Ghossein.
Members of staff from Orange will help in the distribution process of the food that officially starts on Monday next week in West Pokot, where Orange and World Vision staff will distribute food as well as inspect the installation of water pumps and other development related projects in the area. The team will thereafter move to Laisamis where the team will also inspect the excavation of 5 baakaards, the procurement of 5 drip irrigation equipment in Laisamis and the rehabilitation of two shallow wells as well as a water pan in West Pokot. The rehabilitated pan and shallow wells will serve a total of 4,396 people and their livestock. The intervention will reduce distances to water points and will increase access for both livestock and human consumption.
This noble gesture comes at a time when Orange is about to launch the Kenyan chapter of the globally renowned Orange Foundation. The foundation has been involved in sustainable initiatives across the globe for the past two decades.
“We are happy to note that we shall be launching the Orange Foundation soon and this flag off is in line with the mission of this CSR initiative,” he added.
On his part, the Minister for Information and Communication, Hon. Samuel Poghisio encouraged corporate entities to initiate long term measures to further compliment the government’s mission of making sustainable farming schemes in ASAL regions.
Currently, families in the majority of the Northern Kenya districts including Turkana, Marsabit, Baringo and Samburu, as well as those in North Eastern Province, such as Mandera, Wajir and Garissa, are in dire need of food aid. Also hard hit are the East and West Pokot areas, Baringo, Isiolo, Laisamis and Tana River which are also at risk of losing livestock to the drought.