Airtel Offers Relief to Abused Children in Touching Lives Episode 2

Airtel Offers Relief to Abused Children in Touching Lives Episode 2

 

Airtel, through its Touching Lives philanthropic programme, has come to the aid of a

struggling non-governmental organisation, Child Rights Brigade (CRB), whose

purpose is to rescue abandoned and abused children in Lokoja, Kogi State.

In the second episode of Airtel Touching Lives season three, Esther Aniagwu, a

victim of child abandonment and domestic violence, suddenly finds herself homeless,

motherless, and helpless. But in an unusual lucky break, a total stranger rescues her.

This Good Samaritan, Destiny Adejo, is the founder of CRB and a survivor of sexual

abuse.

For three years, charity has provided a sanctuary for molested children in its

community and, so far, it has helped 10 children. According to Destiny, six of these

kids have become “very successful.”

Yet, if Esther’s case will serve as a guide, saving these youngsters is often an uphill

task for the charity, especially because Destiny finances her work with the profits

from her homemade soap and shampoo enterprise. Her income is rarely enough to

feed, clothe, and put the kids through school. And when the kids fall ill, it takes the

generosity of a doctor friend of hers to get them treated.

So for her indefatigable work in social advocacy and entrepreneurship, Destiny

becomes a perfect candidate for an Airtel Touching Lives intervention. At the end of

the episode, she receives exactly that, becoming an extremely grateful beneficiary of

the Airtel Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) project.

She is not alone, however. Esther, who at 18 has blossomed into a well-spoken and

well-mannered young lady, also receives help from the telecommunications giant.

For the teenager, considering the hardship she has had to endure, this denouement

is bittersweet.

In the episode, Esther recalls how, having recently watched her mother die of an

undiagnosed illness, she resorted to panhandling. One afternoon, exhausted, she lay

down on the ground and fell asleep in an open market. It was here that Destiny found

her, and so began the arduous journey to rehabilitation for the orphan.

“The day I met Aunty Esther was the best day of my life. God had seen my heart and

answered my prayers and removed me from the street,” she says.

Destiny confirms that Esther “was frightened, traumatised, and felt rejected.” But it is

a behaviour Destiny understands quite well. “Children that are being abused feel

rejected and don’t feel loved. They don’t have emotional feelings and once someone

doesn’t have that kind of feeling, they become a nuisance to the society. Our duty is

to bring them back to where they were before,” She says.

So, she consistently counselled the girl, helping her see that “there’s life after [all]

this.” In the meantime, she taught Esther how to make liquid soap and shampoo, and

then got her trained as a barber.

Now, Esther has passed her secondary school examinations and is getting ready for

the university. When she gets there, she intends to run a barbershop on the side.

“After my lectures, I can make some money and from there, I’ll start a life,” she says.

This dream of hers is possible because Airtel has promised to rent a shop for her for

one year. As for Destiny, she will receive a supply of soap and shampoo ingredients

and N1m in cash.

The episode also checked in on Samuel Ufot, the orphan from season one whose

sister received a hairdressing salon from Airtel. Today, Samuel and his two sisters

are still thankful and are optimistic for the future.

According to the Airtel CSR unit, Airtel Touching Lives returns this week on television

networks across Africa.

On Saturday, it will run on Africa Magic Urban from 6:30–7pm and on Africa Magic

Family from 7-7:30pm. Later, from 9-9:30pm, it will be broadcast on RaveTV.

The next day, reruns of the episode will be on Africa Magic World from 6-6:30pm,

NTA Network from 6:00-6.30pm, and ArewaTV from 7:7:30pm.

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