Right to Left: Wife of the Lagos state governor, Dr(Mrs) Claudiana Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, Lagos state commissioner for Health, Dr Akin Abayomi. MD/CEO Harvey Health Centre and Maternity, Dr Yetunde Sotunde, and Brand Manager Mouka Yemisi Obadina ….during the presentation of gifts items to the first Baby of the year 2022. (Image: Supplied)
Mouka, Nigeria’s foremost manufacturer of mattresses, pillows and other bedding products, has restated its commitment to adding comfort to the lives of Nigerians of all ages, including newborns. One of the initiatives to bring this corporate mission to reality is through the First Baby of The Year Program.
Mouka has continued to run this program consistently in partnership with the Lagos government. At this year’s ceremony, Mouka presented gifts to mothers of the first babies at the Harvey Road Health Center and Maternity, Yaba, Lagos Mainland. At the same time, this same gesture was replicated in other locations in the state, such as Onikan Health Center and Lagos Island Maternity center. Locations outside Lagos were not left out as first babies were celebrated by the brand in Ogun, Oyo, Edo, Imo, Enugu, Rivers, Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Kaduna, Kano and Plateau States.
Items presented by the company to the first births included Dreamtime mattress, Mouka baby mat, baby wipes, diapers and other items of value to the mother and child.
Speaking at the event in Lagos, the wife of Lagos state governor, Dr (Mrs) Claudiana Ibijoke Sanwoolu, thanked Mouka for the valuable gift items. And praised the company’s “consistency in adding value to life through quality sleep”.
Other notable personalities present included the Lagos State Commissioner for Health Dr, Akin Abayomi, the MD/CEO of Harvey Health Center and Maternity, Dr Yetunde Sotunde. And other top government functionaries who were part of the Governor’s wife’s entourage.
Commenting on the initiative, the Brand Manager, Mouka, Yemisi Obadina, explained that the priority of Mouka is to continually advocate a healthy sleep culture, especially in children. Adding that the Mouka Dreamtime mattresses are specially designed with children in mind.
According to her, the Dreamtime mattress is water-resistant yet breathable to prevent excessive sweating. Thus, keeping the child’s body cool through the night. It is also made with the right foam density to keep them comfortable while they sleep. Obadina pointed out that quality sleep is associated with healthy physical and cognitive development in children. Which is why the brand associates itself with the worthy programme of the Lagos First Lady to ensure these babies enjoy the gift of quality sleep from birth.
The mother of the first baby at Harvey, Mrs Abdul Ganiyat Sukurat, expressed profound gratitude to the bedding company for the valuable gesture.
Last year, Mouka also celebrated the first births in Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Idi Araba, Lagos; Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital, Sagamu, Ogun state. And the University College Hospital, Ibadan, Oyo state to present similar gesture to the first babies of the year.
In over 62 years, Mouka has grown to become Nigeria’s preferred brand in its industry and has maintained its reputation as an innovative trendsetter. Mouka has a wide range of quality products such as the Royal Luxury Pillow Top. Wellbeing orthopedic range of mattresses, Klinic hospital mattresses, Mondeo Plus spring mattresses. And an assortment of pillows to help Nigerians sleep well and wake up refreshed.
Coca‑Cola Africa Launches JAMII, Its New Sustainability Platform
Coca‑Cola Africa Operating Unit (“AOU”) and its bottling partners announced the launch of JAMII, the new Africa-focused sustainability platform. The platform houses the Company’s existing and new sustainability initiatives. Through this signature platform, Coca‑Cola hopes to attract like-minded partners to help accelerate the on-the-ground impact of its initiatives.
The new platform will build and expand on the past accomplishments in three areas; water stewardship, the economic empowerment of women and youth and waste management. This will be delivered together with bottling partners, system employees, and several NGO partners.
“We recognize the responsibility we have as market leaders to make a meaningful difference. To empower and protect the communities and the environment in which we operate. Whether it is giving people access to safe drinking water, creating economic opportunities for people in dire need of it. Or reducing the impact of our operations on the environment, we are committed to making that difference.” said Bruno Pietracci, Africa President at The Coca‑Cola Company.
Patricia Obozuwa, AOU Vice President for Public Affairs, Communications and Sustainability added; “We chose the name JAMII, a Swahili word that means Community, Society, People. This is because it represents who we are as Africans and aligns with our values as an organization. Our resilience, our commitment, and our spirit of community. Consolidating our sustainability efforts under this umbrella will allow us to strengthen our value proposition. And make good on our promise to continue to be a trusted partner for sustainable growth in Africa.”
In the area of women and youth economic empowerment, JAMII will promote and stimulate entrepreneurship opportunities. Through the provision of improved access to skills training, networks, finance and markets. To date, over 2 million women across Africa have been economically enabled as part of the 5by20 program.
Also in the area of water stewardship, we will replenish 100% of the water used in production of our products. By managing water use efficiency in our operations, supporting the conservation of natural water resources. And improving community water access and climate change adaptation. So far, combined efforts by Coca‑Cola Africa, The Coca‑Cola Foundation and its partners have resulted in sustainable access to drinking water for over 6 million people through the Replenish Africa Initiative (RAIN).
For waste management, Coca‑Cola Africa is committed to driving a world without waste. Nearly all of Coca‑Cola’s packaging is already recyclable, with the goal of recycling the equivalent of 100% of its packaging waste by 2030.
Obozuwa added that “Coca‑Cola Africa is already forming new partnerships to facilitate the implementation of JAMII projects that will deliver on these goals.”
Internally, JAMII will inspire employees to make a difference in their immediate communities. Employee-nominated charities will receive grants and employee volunteering will be encouraged. Also, The Coca‑Cola Employee Disaster Relief Fund will support employees facing financial hardship as a result of a natural disaster.
Oliver Griffith: Protecting Africa’s forests through REDD+
Oliver Griffith, is a former US Diplomat and World Bank Group (Image: Oliver Griffith)
Deforestation and forest degradation are the second leading causes of global warming, responsible for about 15% of global greenhouse gas emissions. The recent COP-26 recognized this with a pledge to stop deforestation by 2030. But how will we get there?
Can we in the North tell developing countries not to cut down their forests because we need them as carbon sinks to slow down climate change? Not without some form of compensation. They’re desperate for economic growth and have a right to use their resources.
European countries cut down their trees centuries ago for the same reasons. And the US now emits over 15 metric tons of CO2 per capita, almost eight times as much as the average sub-Saharan country. The same people who lecture developing countries are the ones who drive SUVs. And consume the soy-fed beef and palm oil that contribute to deforestation. We need a reality check.
Why not just buy all those rainforests and turn them into national parks to preserve them as the world’s lungs? Not a bad idea, and it’s worked in some places, but what if there are people living in the forests and contributing to their demise? Population pressure, subsistence farming, and fuel wood and charcoal making account for about half of tropical forest loss, while commercial agriculture, logging, and more recently climate disasters, account for the rest. So, the obvious solution is to lessen these activities.
Since at least half of deforestation is linked to rich world consumption patterns, an important step is to change these. There are encouraging signs, but the growing middle classes in developing countries want to live well too. And how can we tell a family just escaping poverty that they shouldn’t have modern conveniences or eat beef? Changing habits and the economic models that sustain them won’t be easy.
Tackling deforestation on the ground is an indispensable adjunct. It should involve giving indigenous inhabitants title to the lands they have sustainably used for centuries. Creating family planning programs to ease demographic pressure, and finding sustainable livelihoods for forest dwellers. And governments must cut subsidies for unsustainable forest activities and improve environmental laws and forest management.
Since the primary drivers of deforestation are economic, we must find economic solutions, making the trees more valuable standing than cutting down. Among the most effective and far reaching is the United Nations’ REDD+ program. It Reduces Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation by selling carbon credits based on verified emission reductions in forests. The proceeds are used to help the forest communities find more sustainable livelihoods and improve their standards of living. By harnessing market-based economic mechanisms for an economic problem. It may have the greatest chance of success among the many initiatives with the same goals.
A crucial component is gaining influence in the decision-making process for land use, which is challenging in the countries where most tropical forests are located. It requires international encouragement, such as through COP-26, and local policy reforms. At the same time we need quick action on the ground where deforestation is happening.
The results so far are encouraging. Studies of REDD+ projects worldwide have found that they reduce deforestation while improving the lives of forest dwellers. Moreover, REDD+ has increased the awareness and commitment of governments and the private sector on the importance of forest preservation. Pinpointed commercial agriculture as a driver of deforestation, and provided a platform to secure land rights. It’s not a magic bullet and must be combined with activism against polluting companies in the global North, but it’s a good start.
Oliver Griffith recently visited two REDD+ projects run by Wildlife Works, a private conservation company. The Kasigau Corridor Project in Kenya, which was the first REDD+ project to be verified by the two main REDD+ standards (VCS, CCBA) in 2011, and the ERA-Congo Project in Mai Ndombe province in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). What impressed me was not just the slowing down of deforestation. But the positive socio-economic effects of the substantial funds flowing into these poor regions from the sale of carbon credits.
In the Kasigau Corridor area, wherever you turn there are community projects, from schools and clinics to handicrafts cooperatives, water tanks, pumps, and farming cooperatives. In fact, Wildlife Works facilities are far more visible than those of the local or national governments.
In Mai Ndombe the impact is even more dramatic. The 180,000 residents in the isolated forest communities in the 300,000-hectare project area lack just about everything – health care, education, electricity, running water, and adequate nutrition. Once again, the community-based Wildlife Works projects are popping up everywhere, and are already reaching over 50,000 people, taking the place of underfunded state services. That this is happening in the DRC, and with relatively efficient support from the government, is even more remarkable.
Time will tell if such projects are sustainable in the long term. It would be better if developing governments took on these tasks themselves, and rich countries finally fulfilled their promises to drastically cut emissions. However, this is wishful thinking so, given the urgency of deforestation, we need viable alternatives such as REDD+.
Article By: Oliver Griffith, a former US Diplomat and World Bank Group (IFC) official with 35 years in foreign affairs. Much of it devoted to Africa and economic affairs.
Talabat Egypt’s COVID-19 Vaccination Awareness Campaign
talabat Egypt’s Delivery Man (Image: Supplied)
talabat, the leading food delivery and e-commerce platform in Egypt and the Middle East, has announced the completion of a digital awareness campaign on the COVID-19 vaccination with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) during the months of November and December 2021.
The campaign saw the dissemination of key messages provided by UNICEF on talabat Egypt’s communication social media channels and reached millions of users. The awareness campaign comes within the framework of talabat’s commitment to support all segments of society. And advance the government’s efforts in curbing the spread of COVID-19.
talabat Egypt’s Managing Director, Hadeer Shalaby, affirmed that “the full-fledged digital awareness campaign aimed to encourage users across Egypt to apply for the vaccine for their own safety. And that of others, especially the elderly, people with chronic diseases and children. This comes in line with the nation-wide efforts to safeguard and vaccinate the Egyptian population against the virus.”
For his part, Mr. Jeremy Hopkins, UNICEF Representative in Egypt stated that: “Together with our private sector partners we continue to raise awareness about the importance of inoculations. UNICEF strongly believes that vaccinations are crucial to reduce the disease burden in the country, save lives. As more people get vaccinated, the faster it will be for us to see a return to normalcy. And to better access to health, education and protection services for every child living in Egypt and their families.”
Noteworthy, talabat Egypt has been working to have its platform as a vehicle for support through corporate responsibility efforts. Such as its partnerships that aim to facilitate and support donations to reach the most vulnerable in the region. Talabat has also created multiple initiatives to raise awareness and funding to regional humanitarian needs in Palestine, India, Lebanon and more.