FIRST LADY URGES COMPANIES TO REDIRECT CSR INITIATIVES TOWARDS PUBLIC HEALTH
By David Mwanza
The First Lady Amai Auxillia Mnangagwa, who is also the country’s Health Ambassador, has made a passionate plea to both public and private companies to consider structuring their corporate social responsibility programs to meet the urgent requirements of public hospitals.
Amai Mnangagwa made the call this Friday during a joint occasion to mark the unveiling of a fully equipped and refurbished hospital ward at Sally Mugabe Hospital in Harare, and a donation of a consortium of medical equipment worthy US$350 000 to the same institution sourced by an American Non-Governmental Organisation, Matter.
Netone and TelOne jointly funded the refurbishment of the hospital ward at Zimbabwe’s largest hospital, while an American organisation Matter was responsible for sourcing the medical equipment donated by the First Lady on behalf of Angel of Hope Foundation.
Beatrice Infectious Disease Hospital in Harare and Bulawayo’s Mpilo Hospital are the other two public health hospitals to benefit from the TelOne and NetOne collaborative gesture.
The two state parastatals also drilled a borehole at the hospital to mitigate against the water challenges the institution was facing.
Amai Mnangagwa was accompanied by the ICT Minister, Dr Jenfan Muswere, his Deputy Cde Dingumuzi Phuthi and the Deputy Health Minister, Dr John Mangwiro.
“My message today is to therefore implore other corporates and donors to consider structuring their corporate social responsibility deliberately targeted to improve our public hospitals as access to health is a core indicator of development in any country.
“I am delighted to be officiating at the event today, which is a highlight of the hard work that has been put to support one of the major central hospitals in our country, Sally Mugabe Central Hospital during these trying times,” Amai Mnangagwa said.
The First Lady urged other companies to emulate the collaborative approach taken by NetOne and TelOne in assisting in the rebuilding and capacitation of public hospitals.
“The hard work I have witnessed here today is most pleasing especially as it depicts how collaborative effort can easily help us to rebuild and capacitate health facilities countrywide. On that note let me commend the two state owned institutions TelOne and NetOne for coming up with this exemplary initiative. This is certainly the way to go if indeed we want to achieve more and get our health system back on track.
“Specifically the intervention we have witnessed here today is timely and most critical at this point for the Sally Mugabe Central Hospital which is the biggest referral hospital with a bed capacity of 1186. As we all know many of our vulnerable people are cared for at this hospital. It therefore becomes imperative that we focus on ensuring that the facility is capacitated especially as a way to create a safety net for our people,” Amai Mnangagwa said.
Turning to the donation by Matter, Amai Mnangagwa said, “As we gather today, besides the amazing work done by TelOne and NetOne we are also witnessing the handing over of hospital equipment worth US$348,000 which was sourced from Angel of Hope partners, a United States of America NGO, Matter.”
Amai Mnangagwa said Angel of Hope Foundation remained committed to collaborating with public hospitals in pursuit of revamping the country’s health facilities.
To date Angel of Hope Foundation has donated a total of US$1.4 million towards the refurbishment of Lukhosi and Hwange Hospitals and establishment of innovation hubs at Victoria Falls Primary School in the resort town of Victoria Falls and Takashinga Primary School in Hatcliff, Harare.