By Modupe Gbadeyanka
For the second year in a row, members of staff of Wema Bank Plc have donated their salary for the treatment of children in emergency wards of three government-owned hospitals across the country.
Since 2016, Wema Bank, one of the leading financial institutions in Nigeria, has made February its month of giving by donating funds to mark St. Valentine’s Day, which holds every 14th of the second month of the year.
The initiative, called Purple Nectar, is designed to touch the lives of people in the communities where the bank operates.
It involves each interested staff donating a day’s Salary for Love as a way of celebrating St. Valentine’s Day.
“Every 14th of February, the world celebrates St. Valentine’s Day. Usually, couples go out on this day as a way of showing love to each other.
“But at Wema Bank, we decided that while it is fine for couples to show love to each other on this day, our focus as a bank should be on showing love to those who need it but are not getting it,” said the Managing Director/CEO of Wema Bank Plc, Mr Segun Oloketuyi.
Mr Oloketuyi, while presenting a cheque to one of the beneficiaries of the 2017 Purple Nectar Initiative at the Children Emergency Ward of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), said further that, “Some are in critical situations and they need all the help they can get.
“In our own little way of showing love, the staff of Wema Bank decided to put their salaries for that particular day (February 14) together and looked for people who need our love. The demonstration of this love is to support those who need help, especially in health-related issues.”
Children present at the LUTH Emergency Ward when Wema Bank visited were being treated for several ailments.
The mother of a 7-month old baby who benefitted from the initiative, Mrs Ngene broke down in tears as the Wema Bank Managing Director presented a cheque to her.
She thanked the staff of Wema Bank for the kind gesture and managed to smile before Mr Oloketuyi left her son’s bed side.
Another patient at LUTH who benefitted from the Purple Nectar Initiative is a 10-year-old girl who is undergoing chemotherapy. Within the 12 hours before the Wema Bank staff visited, she had taken more than 9 pints of blood.
Her mother, Mrs Soetan, who said her daughter had been at the hospital for 3 months expressed appreciation for the bank’s donation and prayed that God blesses the Wema Bank staff who donated to her ailing daughter.
Wema Bank’s Purple Nectar began in 2016 as part of the bank’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives focused at helping the less-privileged in the society.
One of last year’s beneficiaries, a physically challenged hairdresser bought herself a wheelchair and set up a beauty shop after getting the Purple Nectar funding. She is doing well and has started production of her beauty care line.
The beneficiaries of this year’s Purple Nectar include patients at the Children’s emergency ward at LUTH, Braithwaite Memorial Specialist Hospital, Old GRA Port Harcourt and Wuse General Hospital, Abuja.
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