Orange Foundation has provided €1.3 million in financial aid to 17 countries in Africa and the Middle East to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.
These funds, according to the foundation, will be used to support national efforts to vaccinate as many people as possible and to help combat health crisis and its effects in the countries.
Some of the countries include Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Madagascar, Mali, Morocco, Mauritius, Senegal, and Sierra Leone.
The economy of one of the countries, Ivory Coast, has been struggling amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to a 2020 World Bank report, the overall Covid-19 impact is highly heterogenous, and more pronounced for smaller firms in the cocoa exporting nation.
Large enterprises have experienced adjustment costs to their operations (reduced hours, constrained logistics and access to inputs) but they typically had cash buffers and more capacity to manage the situation.
In contrast, smaller firms, notably in some sectors (like hospitality, professional
services) had much less financial resilience to get them through a prolonged difficult time.
Ivory Coast has begun giving shots to inoculate against Covid-19 with vaccines recently delivered by the global COVAX initiative, which was created to ensure that low- and middle-income countries have fair access to doses.
‘To take on the health crisis in Africa and the Middle East, each of our 17 countries will use this aid to supplement projects that have already been launched locally in collaboration with the country’s health authorities’, CEO of Orange Middle East and Africa, Alioune Ndiaye, said in a statement.
‘In addition to providing protection kits (masks, sanitiser, gloves, goggles, coveralls, etc.) and medical equipment and taking urgent action alongside NGOs, we are proud to facilitate access to the Covid-19 vaccine which is a huge challenge for African countries’.
Also speaking the foundation’s Executive Director of CSR, Diversity and Philanthropy, Elizabeth Tchoungui, this support for vaccination comes in addition to the €5.5 million that was already made available in Africa and the Middle East by the Orange Group and the Orange Foundation in April 2020.
The foundation said it got involved from the very beginning of the health crisis to support protection and health care measures and to provide essential supplies to the populations in all its coverage areas.
Source: Orange Foundation
Photo source: AP/Diomande Ble Blonde