In line with its corporate social responsibility (CSR), West African Ventures Group (WAV), an international group of companies operating offshore globally, has donated a brand new passenger bus to the Down Syndrome Foundation of Nigeria.
A company official, Mrs. Eno Agada, who made the presentation at the foundation’s Lagos office, stated that the gesture was part of WAV’s effort “at giving back to the society and putting smiles on the faces of the needy”.
Agada said the foundation was chosen as beneficiary because it was found to be in dire need and the WAV Group feels honoured to meet such need.
“Their fliers got to us, and we visited the premises and presented a report to the president who immediately made the decision, based on our report, to donate a brand new bus to the foundation”, Agada said.
Receiving the key of the bus, the elated national president of the foundation, Mrs. Rose Mordi, expressed appreciation to the company for the kind gesture.
“I think I am lost for words because I am totally overwhelmed. I least expected this, but I think it is the best Christmas gift my children have had. This is the first time we are getting this type of gift at this time of the year. Usually, people give us food stuffs or give us some money or school equipment but I think this bus donation beats all”, she said.
She added: “It is one of the most significant items that we need for the smooth running of what we are doing. The children we have here have special needs and part of the programme we have is social integration and we have to move them around because they cannot take public transport, they cannot go out for events on their own and if we don’t have a vehicle to take them out, the programme will not be effective”.
She explained that the foundation takes care of Down Syndrome in children and some adults, caused by a genetic disorder resulting from the addition of an extra chromosome in a zygote, which according to her, predisposes them to mental retardation and a few other health issues.
“The only way to take care of them is to carry out early medical intervention, early educational intervention plus vocational training and early social integration. And if these three programmes are effectively carried out, these children can live at least a semi -independent life”, Mordi added.
She called on government and private organisations to help the foundation in tackling the condition by putting in place structures that will help to provide early intervention for the affected children.
According to her, the foundation is trying to put structures on ground to fully integrate them into the society and give them a sense of belonging.
“We have been calling on the federal government, state government and the corporate world to partner us. In advanced countries, the basic structure for such organisation is provided by the government for instance, medical care, but unfortunately there is no such thing in Nigeria as we speak. So, we appeal to government to please rise to the responsibility and try to put structures on ground and partner us. We have already done a greater part of the work, but we do need the government to come forward and help us carry it effectively on a bigger scale”.
The West African Ventures Group is a 100 per cent Nigerian-owned group of companies offering offshore installation, accommodation and support services to the oil and gas industry worldwide.