Through its corporate social responsibility programme, Standard Lesotho Bank handed over a two roomed house for ‘Mese family at Ha Mosili in the Berea district. This gesture is a direct response to the need for a decent, clean and safe shelter to this child-headed family. The handover is the second for 2018 following a commitment of M450,000 that the bank signed with Habitat for Humanity Lesotho earlier this year.
‘Matiba ‘Mese, and her three siblings, Leboea, ‘Mapitso and Nthabiseng live in a child headed household, not an uncommon occurrence amongst children who have lost both parents while still young in Lesotho. They lived in an old dilapidated mud rondavel whose poor state posed a serious danger to the lives of these children as it could easily collapse at any moment. The door did not shut well and let in cold air into the shack again posing a health threat to the girls and their brother exposing them to health conditions resulting from cold weather. The ‘Mese family are now owners to a new two roomed house with enough space and security for the girls. The family also has a new ventilated improved pit latrine to address their sanitation needs.
The construction of the house was coordinated by Habitat for Humanity Lesotho, a non-governmental organization whose mandate is to bring housing to the needy, especially orphaned and vulnerable children who clearly have no means of putting a roof above their heads. Speaking on behalf of Standard Lesotho Bank, the Marketing Manager – Communications and Sponsorships, Mr. Manyathela Kheleli said over and above the funding towards the construction of this house, a contingent of more than twenty staff members of the bank including its Chief Executive, Mr. Mpho Vumbukani also donated their time to lend a hand during the actual build as part of the Bank@Work initiative, where staff gets involved in social responsibility initiatives supported by the bank.
Mr. Kheleli emphasised that the bank together with its staff recognise the plight of many children who are left stranded when they lose both parents to disease. “As a bank firmly rooted in Lesotho, we share the trials and tribulations of our people, which is why we also come here as staff to make a difference in our communities. This is the seventh home that we donate since 2013 when we started this project.” He added. Kheleli also commended the Pulane Community Council and their area chief for helping in the construction by supplying construction sand and ferrying water for the build.
The National Director of Habitat for Humanity Lesotho, Mrs. ‘Mathabo Makuta thanked Standard Lesotho Bank for their overwhelming support and hailed other stakeholders who got involved in bringing a positive change to the lives of orphaned and vulnerable children in Lesotho.
Standard Lesotho Bank and Habitat for Humanity Lesotho have been in partnership for over five years and to date, three orphaned families have benefitted from the support of the bank.