Airtel Africa is doing other things apart from engaging Safaricom and other regional operators in a vicious Price and Clients war. The company is involved in CSR and it is targeting the young minds who are threatened with hunger. The African telecom giant announced a donation worth Kshs 16.8m towards a supplementary feeding program in Kenya that aims to target 25,000 school children from drought-stricken parts of the country, over a period of six months.

With the donation, The Red Cross Society will provide Unimix – a highly nutritious corn and soya blend – to students from over 250 schools in Lamu, Ijara, Samburu, Marsabit, Moyale, Mandera, Wajir, Garissa, Kajiado and West Pokot districts. Airtel was touched with the plight of the students from the regions that they decided to intervene.

“Education is the key to eradicating extreme poverty in the world and it would be a blow for communities to be sucked back into the vicious poverty cycle by the vagaries of weather. At Airtel, we remain committed to empowering communities by promoting educational opportunities that make a positive difference,” said Jayant Khosla, Anglophone MD, Bharti Airtel Africa.

The donation will be spread evenly across the 10 target districts, covering approximately nine schools in each district. Speaking after receiving the donation, Mr. Abbas Gullet, Kenya Red Cross Secretary General, lauded Airtel’s gesture saying the donation will ensure that children are kept in school in the target areas. “Despite the fact that the rains are here, they are not yet being experienced in the Arid and semi arid Region, and so, communities here are still vulnerable. Many school-going children are still out of school in the hardest hit areas since it is a challenge for them to stay in school on empty stomachs. Furthermore, movement by their parents in search of water and pasture cannot allow them to stay in school,” said Mr. Gullet.

Airtel’s said it had chosen to partner with the Red Cross Society for this initiative based on the Society’s experience with similar projects in the past. With 64 branches, eight regional offices and 70,000 volunteers, the Redcross Kenya has the capacity – both on a regional level and through its headquarters – to quickly and efficiently deploy resources to affected areas in need.