As the MTN Foundation celebrates 10 years of investing in community development in Uganda, the Board of Trustees of the Foundation today announced a commitment to invest up to UGX. 5 billion shillings into community transformation projects across the country.
The commitment was announced by the Chairman of the MTN Foundation, Mr. George William Egaddu who said, “The MTN Foundation has been around for the last 10 years and has made great strides in empowering the underserved communities. I believe that with this Ugx. 5billion shillings we will be able to expand the footprint of impact to more deserving communities across the country.”
The funds will go towards a number of projects that must fall within the three MTN Group Foundation approved categories namely; Education, Health and National Priorities. Key priority will however be placed on Education which forms the cornerstone of the MTN Foundation’s community development investment strategy.
The MTN Uganda Foundation is a non-profit entity that was inaugurated in July 2007 as a vehicle through which MTN Uganda implements its corporate social investments (CSI).
Speaking at the conference, MTN Uganda CEO, Wim Vanhelleputte mentioned that even before the inception of the MTN Uganda Foundation, MTN Ugandan carried out a number of initiatives in different communities of the country. Through the inception of MTN in 1998, MTN Uganda has contributed to social development and CSR programs to the tune of over UGX.30 billion.
From 2013, the MTN Foundation has focused investment on Education, Health and National Priority Areas and has proactively undertaken ICT for Education initiatives which have included; the massive role out of 16 regional ICT resource centers to enable access to quality education, the introduction of the MTN Internet Bus which provides computer training across the country and the skilling for the future initiative in partnership with the National Curriculum Development Centre initiative which is aimed at digitalizing the Uganda secondary school syllabus.
“MTN is honoured to play an active role in shaping the future of our country and what better way to do that than through Education.The world has gone digital and it’s only logical that our Education system embraces this new reality. That is why at MTN we are focusing on enabling education through introduction of technologies that enable and empower the leaner and the teacher to access quality informative and educational material wherever they are,” he concluded.
Some of the projects that have already been approved for this fund include; the MTN Foundation innovation Centre in partnership with Makerere University college of computing and information sciences.
The Innovation Centre aims to enable and empower the youth to develop community impacting innovations through provision of a conducive environment to create, develop and implement innovations. The Centre will also work as an incubation Centre for startup companies developed through this program.
Other initiatives under the Education scope include the construction of 5 schools, one in each region of Uganda in partnership with an NGO partner PEAS. The Foundation will also donate a number of items to 5 regional hospitals including beds, blankets, mosquito nets and other materials as part of its focus on supporting the Health sector.
There will also be a concerted effort to support key disaster preparedness and humanitarian initiatives around the country over the next couple of months in consultation with the Government. This will fulfill MTN Uganda Foundation’s commitment to supporting communities around the country.