, NAIROBI, Kenya Aug 5 – The Kenyans4Kenya charity initiative that seeks to raise funds to feed those affected by the famine raging across parts of the country raised over Sh490 million following a funds drive for corporates on Friday.
A statement from the initiative’s publicists GinaDin Corporate Communications said Sh436,622,722 had been raised by 5PM Friday.
Another Sh53.4 million was pledged in kind including media time and food items among them Unimix and Sugar according to figures released by audit firm Deloitte.
At the Corporate Fundraising event alone, Sh301,368,880 was raised from the corporate organisations represented, in addition to over Sh135 million that had been raised by ordinary Kenyans through various mechanisms among them Safaricom M-PESA, KCB, Airtel Money, Nakumatt, YuCash, Orange Money and the sale of special T-Shirts designed to spread the message.
On Thursday, Google Africa had pledged Sh92 million ($1 million).
During the Corporates Pledge Day at the Serena Hotel, Kenya Airways gave Sh10 million and announced that it had come up with nine initiatives to help feed and alleviate famine in the affected parts.
The national carrier will offer cargo space for use by Red Cross to transport donations from destinations that the airline flies to in Europe and Africa for the next two months.
Chief Executive Officer Titus Naikuni said for long term sustenance Kenya Airways will review its Corporate Social Responsibility (SCR) program for the next two to three years and contribute 60 percent of the CSR budget to putting in place sustainable measures that will ensure access to safe water for residents of drought stricken areas specifically in Turkana County.
East Africa’s largest insurance company, Jubilee Insurance announced a donation of Sh7.5 million to support victims of the ongoing drought in the North Eastern province of Kenya.
The Secretary General of the Kenya Red Cross Society Abbas Gullet promised to the corporates that their money will be put to good use and that the funds will be audited by Deloitte which contributed Sh1 million to the noble course.
“Deloitte have given their services for free and the accounts will be open to scrutiny,” he said.
He said that apart from meeting the immediate needs of food, the Red Cross Society of Kenya will help establish initiatives aimed at food production.
Safaricom’s CEO Bob Collymore said that it was an alarming level of indignity for people to starve in the current world order.
“We did not see people die in our tour (Thursday) but what we saw was the death of dignity, able men who should be able to provide for their families down on their knees as mothers and children starved,” he said.
Kenya’s largest brewer the East African breweries also donated Sh10 million while Haco industries pledged Sh3.6 million worth of food supplements.
Equity Bank pledged Sh20 million through its chairman DrJames Mwangi to help address the short term food and emergency requirements as well as initiatives for the long term solutions to the food production.
Orange Kenya pledged Sh6 million while the Standard Group pledged Sh15 million, while oil marketer shell Kenya donated 30,000 litres of fuel to aid in the transportation of food.
The Kenya commercial Bank pledged Sh7.5 million while the British American Tobacco company donated 10 million while the Uchumi chain of supermarkets pledged 2million
Nairobi Java Coffee House announced that it will contribute ten shillings for every cup of coffee or tea bought for the next 60 days.
The government has commended the Kenyans for Kenya initiative announcing that it is equally committed to addressing the food crisis issue having committed Sh10 billion towards that direction.
Head of Public service Francis Muthaura said that the public initiative ably augments the government’s effort to ensure that those suffering are assisted.
“We are organising for the food to be bought and be transported to the areas where it is needed. The government will do all within its means to ensure no citizen suffers further,” said Mr Muthaura.
The Head of Public service was speaking at the Kenya Institute of Administration on the sidelines of a meeting organised to interrogate the Public Service Commission Bill and how it would affect the Public Service governance in general.
Nyandarua North District Commissioner Pauline Ndola, also announced at the Kenya Institute of Administration that senior government officers drawn from nearly all ministries contributed Sh100, 000 to the Kenyans for Kenya kitty.
The Kenyans for Kenya initiative seeks to bring the Kenyan public together with a target of raising 500 million shillings in four weeks to address a mix of short, medium and long term intervention measures to ease the famine that has over time affected Northern Kenya.