Yuletide: BAN Donates Food Items, N50m to Families of Deceased Members

Yuletide: BAN Donates Food Items, N50m to Families of Deceased Members

In the spirit of the Yultide, a nonprofit organisation, Brothers Across Nigeria (BAN), has donated N20 million worth of food items and cash to 102 families of their departed members across the world.

Through the BAN Outreach Commission (BANOC), the organisation has spent over N30 million in two years feting families of its departed members.

The Global President of BAN Azubuike Onowu, who is a reputable Nigerian engineer, while speaking on the rationale behind the BANOC, said the aim was to ameliorate the burden of survival for the families of departed members BAN.

“In a society like Nigeria where welfare and economic safety nets are far and few in between, death of a breadwinner often means a radical deterioration in the economic fortunes of family members; parents, spouses, children and other dependents that survive them, an absence that is often accentuated during the festivities that occur around our various holidays.

“This is the current reality for most Nigerians, a reality that the leadership of Brothers Across Nigeria / Buccaneers Confraternity has created structures to ameliorate for families of its departed members,” Onowu said.

He explained that “beyond a mandatory minimum contribution by its over 10,000 members worldwide for the families of each departed brother (this currently approximates N10 Million for each family and is adjusted for inflation and purchasing power parity over the years), on November 17, 2022 the current leadership of BAN/BC established the BAN Outreach Commission (BANOC) with a primary objective to consistently reach out to the families of BAN/BCs departed members (especially during festive seasons), providing financial resources and empowerment to enable them not just better enjoy the festivities but remind them that they are not forgotten and that their son/father/brother is remembered”.

Furthermore, the Chairman of BANOC, Mr. Joseph Amare, while giving more insight on the disbursement of the welfare to the 102 benefiting families, said, “the 2022 pilot saw BANOC raise about N10 Million to support families of 76 departed members.

“Each family received a N100,000 total package made up of a N50,000 cash gift as well as groceries worth N50,000.

“The just ended 2023 iteration saw BANOC double the funds raised (primarily from its membership across the world) to N20 Million which allowed us to increase coverage to families of all 102 departed members with each family receiving a total package of N150,000 comprising a N50,000 cash gift and groceries worth N100,000.

“Beyond this support that came from BANOC, BAN/BC’s regional and sub-regional coordinators were all encouraged to enhance the support with additional cash and groceries.”

Engr Onowu while speaking further on the driving force of the welfare to deceased members’ families, said “Broda Deliver Broda is one of the core tenets of BAN.

“In BAN, our brothers are the family we choose. Thus, what BANOC is doing is essentially constantly ‘delivering’ the family of our departed brothers”.

He further noted that true brotherhood transcends death, and in all, “BANOC’s engagements are an addendum to the funds provided to the family of members at their demise, but more importantly serve as a demonstration of the Confraternity’s enduring love for its brothers, both in life and beyond, reaffirming our commitment to stand by our members and their families.

Onowu said through these gestures, BAN aims to reassure their families that although their loved ones are no longer with the confraternity, they continue to live on through the Brotherhood.

The BAN Global President admonished other organisations to emulate BAN and serve as community development agencies as well as welfare safety nets.

“Given the prevailing economic situation and the lack of robust welfare safety nets in Nigeria, associations, confraternities, school alumni associations, town unions and other such bodies can serve as community development agencies and welfare safety nets,” Onowu noted.

He, however, called on all such bodies in Nigeria to seek sustainable ways to support the families of their departed members.

The Buccaneers Confraternity was established in 1972 at the University of Ibadan, the organisation has since undergone several iterations and has grown into an international organization, operating across Africa, Asia, North and South America and Western Europe.

The group remains resolutely focused on its avowed ideals of equity, non discrimination, and service to humanity.

Meanwhile, the group also presented cheques of N9,536,000 each to the families of the following members, Evans
Aganwonyi, Elvis Olise Odagwe, Jacob Egu Okoi, and who passed away recently.

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