March 8, 2011 – Those virgins have a good soul in them. It is not a joke climbing a mountain but they did it and they did it for charity. About 50 staff members of Virgin Atlantic Kenya and UK with their friends and family did a 5 day climb of Mt Kenya aiming to raise over Sh1 Million, all of which will go towards funding a project by Free the Children.
Free the children is an organisation that is the largest network of children helping children and are currently involved in projects around the Narok South area that include education, sanitation, health care and clean water. The organization has more than one million youth involved in innovative education and development programs in 45 countries.
“The Virgin Atlantic staff contribute money in various ways. We have something called “change for children” where we put all our loose change in a kitty, through pledges as well as volunteering to take part in events such as this one. Virgin Atlantic staff are encouraged to get involved in activities that help benefit other communities in order to help make the world a better place. We also take such opportunities to build ourselves as a team,” explained David Rose, the Virgin Atlantic Kenya Country Manager.
“The climb was great. This was the second time for some of us and it was a huge success. So far, we have managed to collect Sh1.5 Million for this particular project. Through Free the Children, we are making a difference in the lives of thousands of communities around the world,” added David.
Through their CSR policy, Virgin Atlantic endeavours to make various projects a reality. They entered into a partnership with Free the Children Organization to support three communities in rural China, India and Kenya.
Free the children have taken in a saying that is very popular in most Kenyan communities: “educate the boy child and benefit an individual, educate a girl child and benefit a community.” Therefore they are focusing on educating girls first.
“We have been operating in Kenya since 1999 within the Narok South district. So far we have a primary school that has gone up to Std 4 but we are planning on expanding it as the student’s progress and very soon I believe this will happen,” shared Brandon McNab, Country Facilitator, Free the Children.
We also recently built a secondary school – Kisaruni secondary school – and we have our first bunch of form one’ girls but we’ll also build a boys school later,” Brandon added.
Virgin Atlantic and Free The Children also have other partners such as KWS, Savage wilderness and Sweet Waters Camp who made the whole thing possible.