As part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives, First City Monument Bank (FCMB), in partnership with Sesor Empowerment Foundation recently gave succour to some internally displaced women in Maiduguri, Bornu State, under an economic empowerment programme aimed at alleviating poverty.
The first batch of beneficiaries, 60 women in all, were given initial start-off funds by the bank for the establishment of small scale businesses.
According to a statement, the gesture would help them cater for themselves and their immediate families.
The beneficiaries also went through training, skill acquisition and other capacity building activities prior to the disbursement of the funds, the statement.
“Thousands of women and children have been made homeless, and driven out of their socio-economic activities due to insurgency in the North East part of Nigeria in the recent years,” it added.
Commenting on the initiative, the Group Head, Corporate Affairs of FCMB, Mr. Diran Olojo said: “Our bank is not unaware of the massive hardship faced by thousands of helpless and innocent Nigerians, victims, who have been affected in years of disrupting insurgency in the North-east.
“We are concerned about these people who have suffered serious lack, hunger-induced diseases and absence of adequate medical care, having been denied of peace and completely cut-off from their social life, farming and other economic activities. FCMB is motivated to support government effort in providing for them and forms part of our commitment to enhance the standard of living of the populace.”
He commended the government of Bornu State, the Federal Government of Nigeria, other organisations as well as well-meaning Nigerians who had made a lot of efforts towards providing succour for IDPs through donation of various materials and achieving sustainable peace to see an end to the crises. Mr. Olojo urged the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the funds.
Speaking at the fund disbursement ceremony, the Bornu State Commissioner for Poverty Alleviation, Hajia Inna Galadima, said: “It is gratifying to see corporate organisations support the state government in its effort towards resolving the current challenges faced by internally displaced persons in their various camps in Bornu State.
” What FCMB is doing today, is very commendable. We want to sincerely thank them and other organisations, who have done similar things, assisting our people while we rigorously search for a lasting solution. We also want to call on other well-meaning individuals and organisations to support the effort of government.”
On his part, the Project Officer of Sesor Empowerment Foundation, Mr. Rendrix Berepele, said they were all excited about the incredible project and what it meant for the amazingly strong women who have overcome so much to participate at the event.