Maiduguri: October 24, 2016: As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives, First City Monument Bank (FCMB), in partnership with Sesor Empowerment Foundation, has given succour to some internally displaced women in Maiduguri, Bornu State, Northern East of Nigeria under an economic empowerment programme aimed at alleviating poverty.
The first batch of beneficiaries, 60 women in all, were given initial start-off funds by the Bank on October 20, 2016 at a ceremony in Maiduguri, for the establishment of small scale businesses. The gesture will help them cater for themselves and their immediate families. The beneficiaries also went through training, skill acquisition and other capacity building activities prior to the disbursement of the funds. Thousands of women and children have been made homeless, and driven out of their socio-economic activities due to insurgency in the North East part of Nigeria in the recent years.
Commenting on the initiative, the Group Head, Corporate Affairs of FCMB, Mr Diran Olojo said, “Our Bank is not unaware of the massive hardship faced by thousands of helpless and innocent Nigerians, victims, who have been affected in years of disrupting insurgency in the North East. We are concerned about these people who have suffered serious lack, hunger-induced diseases and absence of adequate medical care, having been denied of peace and completely cut-off from their social life, farming and other economic activities. FCMB is motivated to support government effort in providing for them and forms part of our commitment to enhance the standard of living of the populace’’.
He commended the government of Bornu State, the Federal Government of Nigeria, other organisations as well as well-meaning Nigerians who had made a lot of efforts towards providing succour for IDPs through donation of various materials and achieving sustainable peace to see an end to the crises. Mr. Olojo urged the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the funds.
Speaking at the fund disbursement ceremony, the Bornu State Commissioner for Poverty Alleviation, Hajia Inna Galadima, stated that, ‘’it is gratifying to see corporate organisations support the State government in its effort towards resolving the current challenges faced by internally displaced persons in their various camps in Bornu State. What FCMB is doing today, is very commendable. We want to sincerely thank them and other organisations who have done similar things, assisting our people while we rigorously search for a lasting solution. We also want to call on other well-meaning individuals and organisations to support the effort of government.”
On his part, the Project Officer of Sesor Empowerment Foundation, Mr. Rendrix Berepele, said they were all excited about the incredible project and what it meant for the amazingly strong women who have overcome so much to participate at the event. “We will be mentoring them over the next few months to help them succeed and hope to support more women as time goes on. We also hope that this will encourage other groups to come in and provide sustainable help for the displaced. We need all hands on deck and we are extremely excited to be working with FCMB and the Borno State Government to make a difference. We thank FCMB for their incredible support”, Mr. Berepele enthused.
Sesor Empowerment Foundation is a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) working to support survivors of emergencies, especially internally displaced persons through programmes in emergency relief and rehabilitation.
First City Monument Bank (FCMB) is a member of FCMB Group Plc, which is one of the leading financial services institutions in Nigeria with subsidiaries that are market leaders in their respective segments. Having successfully transformed to a retail and commercial banking-led group, FCMB expects to continue to distinguish itself by delivering exceptional services, while enhancing the growth and achievement of the personal and business aspirations of its customers.