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CSR as business philosophy

Eight years after instituting its corporate social responsibility project, a Lagos agency, X3M Ideas, has consistently used it to galvanise support for societal development. Raheem Akingbolu reports.

The place of corporate social responsibility in business was recently revisited in Lagos when a creative agency – X3M Ideas, inaugurated a significant project to help pupils battle the enduring coronavirus which has kept them away from their school for months.

Top government functionaries in Lagos and some players in the business community, who witnessed the handing over of wash hand station facility and Glo MiFi internet modems with unlimited data, to Opebi Senior High School, Opebi – Ikeja, Lagos to further combat the dreaded Covid-19 and safeguard the health of the students’ population, took turn to deepen discussions around CSR concept.

Since the year 2012, when X3M Ideas, commemorated its first anniversary with a unique art of giving by renovating and handing over a well-equipped block of five classrooms at Opebi Junior High School, the agency has continued to build on the achievement. Last year, the agency handed over a renovated Block 4 Building, housing the new state-of-the-art library facility, counseling centre and the sick bay of Agidingbi Junior Grammar school Ikeja, as its 2019 corporate social responsibility (CSR) project.

Last week, the Chief Executive Officer, X3M Ideas, Steve Babaeko, again led his team to join officials of the Lagos State Government to roll out the drum again to inaugurate a first of kind disinfectant tunnel for students of Opebi Senior High School.

The donation which is largely seen to complement the efforts of government and especially, the Lagos State government led by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, in their combat against the ravaging Coronavirus, will help to further enhance the COVID-19 prevention protocols especially in the area of hand washing and general hygiene of the young students and also provide them access to information and education on the pandemic.

The facility, located the entrance to the Opebi school complex which houses the Opebi Junior School and the Senior High School, is a well-secured, special clear-view panel fence solution where the beneficiary community can walk through the disinfectant tunnel to before assessing the school. It also allows for free airflow with good headroom to give an appealing ambiance.

The tunnel measures 5.5meters x 16 meters, fixed with 10 wash handstands, automatic liquid soap and hand sanitizer decanters 10 apiece. The walk-through area is equipped with two digital thermometers. All equipment is self operational to avoid human contamination.

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While cutting the tape to declare the project open for the service of humanity, the Executive Chairman, Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board (LASUBEB), Hon Wahab Alawiye-King , commended Steve Babaeko of X3M Ideas and his team for providing the facility, noting that its inauguration was timely, considering the global crisis and its importance in the school environment and in the lives of the students.

Alawiye-King who chaired theevent said: “We know what COVID-19 has done throughout the world and we are to adapt to the new normal and part of the new normal is what we are here to commission today.

Commending the agency’s consistent ‘good works”, the SUBEB chairman noted, “You could have taken it to another school but you chose this school, it shows you are a community inclined organisation and we call on others to emulate you act of good works. “Education is a social good and as such, government alone cannot do all that needed to be done and that is why we call on organisations to help us”

Earlier, in her welcome address, an elated Principal of the school, Mrs. Olugbewesa Kofoworola while thanking the donor of the facility, a company she noted has consistently supported the efforts of the Lagos State government, disclosed that X3M Ideas has brought a world-class facility to her school and “we hope to maintain it by the grace of God.”

She said: “Our proactive governor is working so hard to combat COVID-19 and this facility will complement efforts in curbing the pandemic. It’s coming at the time it’s needed the most, adding that the hygiene standard of the students and the school, in general, will be really high from now on. “The facility has brought Opebi Senior Grammar School from obscurity to limelight and rebranded and elevated it to international school standard.

“You have added colour to our school, we are now the pacesetter, thank you for making Opebi Senior Grammar School your choice, I am happy you made my school to be chosen”, she added.

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Making his remark, Babaeko lauded the Governor Sanwo-Olu, and his team in the education ministry for always allowing the creative company to partner with the government annually. “This is our 8th year in business and every year, we would always come back to renovate part of a public school in Lagos and handover to them.

According to the X3M Ideas’ CEO, the company built the hand washing system for the students because they represent the future of this great state. “This year, in view of COVID-19, it becomes imperative to create the hand-washing station just to continue to maintain the high level of hygiene among the students, to protect them and to protect ourselves to ensure that we help flatten the COVID-19 curve and make sure all the wonderful health workers who have put in the time to help manage the crisis don’t have to do more work”.

He noted that the Glo MiFi internet modems were donated to help the students and their teachers keep abreast of the latest COVID-19 news and also help in their academic pursuit.

Corroborating the position of the SUBEB Chairman, Babaeko also enjoined other corporate citizens to pick up a public school and support them in whatever capacity possible. “I am a product of public school as well, so I understand how it is, students in publics school have to be supported with facilities they need to be successful Nigerians”

A representative of the students community, Fatima Mustapha who sees the X3M Ideas’ 2020 CSR project as wonderful, said it was very important to the students’ population at this period of coronavirus, as they needed to remain healthy and wash their hands regularly. “This will be very useful even after the pandemic and we promise to make judicious use of the facility and keep it in good shape. We pray that God will uplift the donor, X3M Ideas” Mustapha said.

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