Heritage Bank on Sunday donated N10 million to the United Nations Children’s Fund to improve the lives of children in Kaduna State.
The Managing Director of the bank, Herbert Wigwe, presented the cheque of the amount to Manuel Rosini, UNICEF’s Chief of Field Office, Lagos, at the end of the Access Bank, UNICEF and Fifth Chucker Polo Charity Shield Tournament in Kaduna.
Wigwe explained that the bank has been making such donations to UNICEF, totaling N130 million, since 2006.
The organizers of the event had earlier visited Local Government Education Authority, Mararaban Jos, one of the benefiting schools, to access the level of interventions and achievements so far.
Wigwe told journalists at the school that the partnership was not only to improve facilities in the schools, but mainly to reshape the lives of the pupils by giving them a new lease.
He said: “When UNICEF, Access Bank and Fifth Chucker began intervening in this school predominated by orphans and vulnerable children years ago, the enrolment was just around 500 pupils.
“Today, this school has an enrolment of about 12,500 pupils.
“This is the result of partnership and we will continue because children represent the future of our country.
“What we do today to these children will determine where they will be tomorrow.
“God expected us to support these children to grow and succeed in life, so we will continue to give in support of children future.
“We are impressed with the level of infrastructural development in the school.
“We will build more computer rooms and provide more computers to improve teaching and learning.”
Responding, Rosini commended the bank and Fifth Chucker for supporting UNICEF to ensure children’s survival and development.
According to him, 50 per cent of all the world’s out of school children are in Nigeria, adding that such support would help a great deal in ensuring that all children are catered for educationally, emotionally, psychologically and socially.
Also speaking, Adamu Atta, the Proprietor, Fifth Chucker Polo Club, said the partnership was to deepen nutrition intervention and support the less privileged children in the state.
Atta said: “We started this school project as pilot programme some years back and we now have other projects around the state focusing on health, nutrition and education.
“We cannot measure the impact of what we have achieved so far, but as you can see, Access Bank has spent hundreds of millions as part of its contribution and we have all been supportive in different capacities for the past 10 years.”
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Polo Charity Shield Tournament is an annual event organised by Access Bank, UNICEF and Fifth Chucker to mobilise resources for children.