The Esicojeni Foundation, a Swazi charity founded by His Majesty King Mswati III, received a donation of R765 000 from Kraft Foods Southern Africa.
Founded in 2007, the foundation brings together eminent individuals and businesses dedicated to eradicating hunger in Swaziland. Its pledge to find potential solutions to child hunger, in particular, is a driving force for all connected to the organisation.
Sandile Simelane, plant director Kraft Foods Swaziland, said his company's funding would go some way towards improving feeding schemes and under-nutrition in the kingdom. He said this project perfectly matched the group''s corporate social responsibility commitment to the alleviation of hunger and poverty through the promotion of healthier lifestyles and sustainable agriculture.
"Kraft Foods has long contributed to innovative ways to improve the lives of those less fortunate than us and we value this opportunity to join forces with a programme that is already doing such good work."Three benefiting receivers
The Esicojeni Foundation is planning to use the funding for the provision of nutritious meals for schoolchildren, a women's poultry farming project and neighbourhood care points to uplift the lives of the neediest children.
Chairman of Esicojeni Foundation, Tineyi Mawocha, said, "The construction of school kitchens with storage and cooking facilities will enhance the efforts of the government in eight public primary schools to provide nourishing, hygienically prepared meals for children in rural poor communities in the Lubombo and Shiselweni regions of Swaziland."
The injection of funds into poultry farming will enable self-employment for a group of women faced with deepening poverty and high unemployment levels in the country. The area of Mankayane has been pinpointed to benefit from the introduction of 3000 broiler chickens to kick-start the scheme that has a guaranteed market for its products, thanks to a platform awarded by the government agricultural marketing organization, NAMBOARD.
Neighbourhood care points have already proven to be a successful development in Swaziland. With at least 1000 already in existence, the impending humanitarian crisis because of HIV/Aids, drought and poverty means the demand is ongoing. Kraft Foods SA has undertaken to build three such centres to facilitate the provision of nutritious meals, care and protection for orphans and vulnerable children.
Simelane told the King that Kraft Foods SA would maintain ties with these projects to continue the company's relationship with the Esicojeni Foundation.