DANGOTE Group , Seven Up Bottling Company Plc , QaterÂ AirÂ amongÂ others have shown their commitmentÂ to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) byÂ supportingÂ Standard Chartered Bank (SCB)Â in its just concluded 5th â€œWalk for Sightâ€ programme in support of the Groupâ€™s Seeing is Believing(SIB) initiative. Seeing is Believing is a Standard Chartered Bank community investment programme structured to invest $20 million to fund the development of sustainable eye care services in less advantaged areas of 20 cities across the world.
Initiated in 2003 and driven by the Bankâ€™s employees, Seeing is Believing is helping tackle avoidable blindness, 90 per cent of which is found in the developing world where the Bankâ€™s business is rooted.
In support of the SIB initiative, Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria has held a fundraising walk annually in the last four years, raising a total of $430,000 which has helped to fund successful cataract operations and treatment (still ongoing ) for approximately 19,000 persons between January 2006 and August 2009. At the ceremony of the â€œ Walk for Sightâ€ , the bank gave 2 cheques totaling N15 million to: Nigeria Society for the Blind:Â Â Â Â Â N7.5 million and Sight Savers International:Â N7.5 million
Both cheques were given based on the funds raised within the country over the last few weeks with the support of the following companies:
Dangote Group, Qatar Air, Unitrust Insurance, James Cubbitt and Associates, GMT Limited, Dana Group, Chellarams Limited, De-United Foods, 7up Bottling Company, Celplas Industries Limited, Chinese National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC), Tilyard Nigeria Limited, Aluko & Oyebode, Nagode Industires Limited, Alkem Nigeria Limited, Eko Hotel, Nycil Limited, ICSL, Zartech Limited and Adepetun, Caxton Martins and Co.
With the funds raised this year, the bank has raised over $530,000 for this initiative in the last five years.According to Christopher Knight, Standard Chartered Bank Nigeriaâ€™s CEO, â€œWe are very proud of what we have achieved with our Walk for Sight initiative in the last five years. However, we could not have done this without the support of a lot of our customers, friends, family members and the media. It is quite gratifying to see that the $430,000 we have raised from this initiative in the last four years has made a positive difference in the activities of our two partner NGOs. We are also happy, that today, we have added another $100,000 to this increasing the total amount raised from this initiative to $530,000.â€
According to Chief Olu Falomo, the Chairman of the Governing Council of the Nigerian Society for the Blind, â€œWe have received unwavering support from Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria for quite a few years now. Without this support, it would have been extremely difficult for us to achieve the objectives of our Vocational Training Centre for the Blind in Oshodi. Over the years, the bank has provided us with amazing financial, infrastructural and administrative assistance.â€
Mr. Sunday Isiyaku, Country Director for Sight Savers International while receiving the cheque saidâ€ We are quite pleased with the generous support we have received over the last few years from Standard Chartered Bank, Nigeria. Over the last four years, investment by the Seeing is Believing programme in Kwara State has meant that human resources have been developed, the number of surgeries performed each year has increased, awareness about eye services has been created and there has been an increase in the number of people accessing services.
This means that the project is now well positioned to grow outputs over the next three years. With the support of Standard Chartered Bank, Sightsavers will be able to continue to provide Comprehensive Eye Care Programmes.â€