Safaricom Foundation yesterday launched a new three-year (2018-2021) strategy plan covering the health, education, and economic empowerment pillars.
Under the strategy, the Foundation will continue to offer immediate financial aid to relief agencies and local organisations that are first responders to emergencies and disasters.
During the event, Safaricom Foundation also celebrated 15 years since inception where it has impacted four million people according to its 2015-2017 report.
Joseph Ogutu, Chairman Safaricom Foundation said: “Our mission is to build communities and demonstrably transform lives through impactful investments and partnerships that are aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals. We made significant achievements in our last strategy and we now have an even stronger desire to deliver greater impact over the next three years.”
The Foundation’s three pillars under the new strategy are aligned with sustainable development goals three, four, and eight which focus on good health, quality education, and economic growth respectively. The pillars are also aligned to the government’s Big Four agenda.
The three pillars will be led by Safaricom Foundation’s trustees.
The Health Pillar
The health pillar will focus on reducing maternal mortality and the number of Kenyans suffering from non-communicable diseases, particularly children with diabetes.
According to Rita Okuthe, one of the trustees leading the health pillar, the Foundation will begin its focus on reducing maternal mortality in Lamu County where women face significant challenges accessing maternity facilities. The county is also grappling with limited facilities to address birth complications.
In addition, the Foundation will offer training of community health workers, outreach services, and infrastructure improvement in order to achieve its goals.
The Education Pillar
In education, the Foundation aims to increase literacy and numeracy skills among children aged 6 to 16 years while focusing on Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) mainly because only 30 percent of future jobs will require a university degree.
Steve Okeyo, one of the trustees leading this pillar said the Foundation will aim to instill the aforementioned skills based on the level of understanding rather than on age and educational level. To achieve this, the Foundation will provide learning materials and train teachers.
Economic Empowerment Pillar
This pillar focuses on reducing the number of youths that are unemployed and underemployed by instilling them with entrepreneurship skills. As a result, the young people will be empowered thereby reducing the dependency rate in the country.
This pillar will be led by Sylvia Mulinge and Josephine Kamanthe.
“We will work with a wide range of partners to co-create strategic and shared value programmes and also engage in advocacy activities that relate to deepening the impact of our work and our partnerships,” Mr Ogutu stated.
Through partnerships with over 1,000 organisations, the Safaricom Foundation has since 2003 made a positive impact on the lives of Kenyans by reducing poverty, protecting the environment, facilitating access to clean water, providing children from nomadic communities with an education, improving access to maternal health services, among others.
During the strategy launch event, other private sector organisations were called to undertake community projects solving various social issues to transform Kenyan lives.