The management of the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) Ltd, has pledged to support the education of its host communities to boost teaching, learning and also provide educational facilities through its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Officials of NBC led by the Public Affairs and Communication Director, Mr. Ekuma Eze, Substainabiling and Community Affairs Manager, Ifeoma Okoye, Public Affairs and Communications Manger, Nwamaka Onyemelukwe, External Communications Manager, Olatomiwa Akande, Government and Regulatory Affairs Manager, Tokunbo Ibrahim and the Public Affairs and Communication Lagos and West, Kemi Michael-Jabagun made the pledge at the unveiling NBC CSR projects for 2016/2017.
Eze explained that education is one of the major focal areas of NBC CSR and that several initiatives in the host communities have been executed in the 2016/2017 to improve on infrastructure in schools, empowering the youth on skill acquisition and provision of ICT.
According to him, NBC has strategies that takes care of children’s educational development in its host communities, stating ‘’we are involved in back-to-school for public primary and secondary schools. We had a career programme which we are redesigning because NBC wants to build a career centres’’.
‘’What we are doing now is to provide infrastructure based on need assessment we carried out. The infrastructure are built in disadvantage areas’’.
The public and communication director said the youth empowerment project is an educational programme and that the project provides skills for the youth with ICT as one of the component just as he revealed that the youth scheme was launched in 2017.
In her remarks, the Public Affairs and Communications Manger, Onyemelukwe said some of NBC CSR are intervention projects in communities it operate and that with eight bottling plants in Nigeria, NBC will continue to provide social services targeted to improve the living standard of its consumers.
Onyemelukwe disclosed that last month NBC organised a skill development programme for 5,000 youth in Abeokuta.
She said the youth were empowered with life and business skills needed to succeed in their careers and business.
The 2016/2017 CSR report ti- tled: ‘’Our impact’’ said ‘’youth empowered is a three-day intensive workshop aimed at increasing the capacity of 10,000 youth across Nigeria by 2020. Experienced facilitators and mentors are recruited to guide the youth throughout the workshop. The workshop was held in Lagos, Port Harcourt and Kano’’
She further revealed that NBC support investment in infrastructure in public schools across the country, noting that it invested in the renovation of St. Peter Primary School in Asejire, Oyo State and in LEA Kuchingoro Primary School in Abuja.
The headmaster of LEA Kuchingoro Primary School, Abuja, Zachariah Sariki said ‘’ I am very impressed with the intervention and the structure of the classrooms. The intervention motivated parents to enrol their children in the school. The building serves primary 1 and primary 2 pupils.’’
One of the class teacher, Mercy Markafi said ‘’the two blocks of classrooms have reduced the over population of the pupils in the class. We used to have 120 to 130 pupils in a class before the intervention, as against 70 to 80 we have presently’’