Global agri-business Olam International, has announced a donation of US$500,000 towards disaster relief efforts in the wake of cyclone Idai in Mozambique and towards continued reconstruction and rejuvenation of communities in Palu, Sulawesi, Indonesia, six months after the earthquake and tsunami disaster.
A donation of US$250,000 will go directly to fund relief and victim support in Mozambique, providing food, building materials, household essentials and sanitation provisions, as the risk of disease outbreaks grows.
The company will leverage its on-the-ground presence and network to deliver support, coordinating with the government and humanitarian partners, including the Red Cross and the U.N World Food Programme.
In Indonesia, US $250,000 will support ongoing, long-term social and economic infrastructure projects to help the country return to normalcy after the devastation from the earthquake and tsunami that struck last year.
Immediately after the disaster, the Olam Cocoa team in Indonesia provided on-the-ground support to communities in the worst affected areas, delivering basic essentials such as food and clothing; establishing a medical camp on its premises and collaborating with Save the Children to help children who had separated from their families or orphaned.
The new donation will focus on reconstructing medical and educational facilities, as well as supporting cocoa farmers who have been adversely affected by the disaster.
In addition to the company donation, Olam employees are making individual contributions.
On announcing the donation to Mozambique and Indonesia, Olam Co-Founder and Group CEO, Sunny Verghese said, “The scale and impact of these disasters has been devastating for people and communities in both regions. Sadly, it is poor communities in developing nations that are impacted most by these climate-related disasters. As a company with a long-standing presence in the two countries, we have been working to provide immediate assistance where it is needed most, and to support long-term efforts to help these communities to get back on their feet and to support them in the months and years ahead.”
Olam has operated in Mozambique since 1999 and is one of the country’s largest employers with a workforce of 4,000, working in rice, edible oils, cotton and cashew. In Indonesia, Olam is the largest exporter of cocoa products and purchases cocoa, coffee, food staples and spices from over 400,000 farmers and suppliers throughout the region.