Uninterruptedly, 24 years now Chief Peter Sunday Memorial Foundation has been in the vanguard of rendering humanitarian services to humanity. This non-governmental, non-profit making organization was established by Mazi Clement Owunna, a business mogul and philanthropist in 1993.
According to him, he founded the N.G.O to immortalize his late father, Chief Peter Sunday Owunna, who survived the vicissitudes of life to become a personage who positively impacted on his environment with the establishment of Starline Nig. Ltd, a leading name in the manufacturer of pharmaceuticals and household products based at Aba, Abia State.
The founder, a quintessential gentleman and humanist is not celebrating the 24th anniversary of the Foundation, but as a friend, this piece is my own way of patting him on the back for giving back to the society quietly without making noise or grandstanding it. Those of us who are very close to this scion of Owunna dynasty will tell that he has compassion, missionary zeal and the consuming passion to put the people first in whatever he does. This disposition informed his sustenance of the foundation despite excruciating business climate these years.
According to Dr. Van Aghazu, who runs the day to day activities of Chief Peter Sunday Memorial Foundation, the organization’s programs are premised on five critical areas; namely: Education, Medical Scheme, Community/Infrastructural development. Micro credit, Economic and Youth empowerment.
In education for instance, from inception, emphasis were placed on selected courses like Medicine, Pharmacy, Accounting and Econometrics, where the country was seemed to be lacking in man power development. However now, the foundation has extended its scope to other areas such as Law and Engineering.
These past 24 years, the Foundation has been touching lives of the weak and down trodden in the society. As a matter of fact, he ploughs back 50% of his profit to humanitarian ventures. In 2014, alone, the Foundation built and donated a 150 million naira Recreation Park to the Imo State University, Owerri, where he served as Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council. In 1998, his Foundation built and equipped a multi-million naira Lecture hall for the medical students at the Abia State University Medical School, Aba. Between 2014 and 2015, it donated over 500 motor cycles and cash gifts to the youths of Okigwe Senatorial District of Imo State.
From its inception till date, the Micro credit scheme of the N.G.O’s intervention has been up beat with poverty alleviation programmes, such as disbursement of cash donations, Hair dressing and Barbing instrument, Generating sets, Sewing machines and Tricycles to indigent members of the society.
Within this period under review, over 20,000 indigent people have benefited from their free medical outreach schemes. As am doing this piece, the process of selecting beneficiaries for the Foundation’s 2016/2017 Bursary/Scholarship programs for undergraduates in Nigerian Universities is on. For you to qualify, must be certified as indigent, brilliant and of good moral standing.
In addition to this, Chief Peter Sunday Owunna Memorial Foundation has also instituted several prizes at various Universities for the best overall graduating students. It is currently working with some Universities to endow the Chief Peter Sunday Owunna Memorial Foundation, chair in BUSINESS ETHICS.
Mazi Clement Owunna’s main motivation in reaching out to the youths and vulnerable in the society is to encourage them be useful to themselves by engaging in meaningful endeavors which will make them shun vices and remain focused. That by doing so, they will stand out among their peers in the society.
It is not an overstatement to say that it is because of his numerous works of charity that he has been severally honoured by the government and the society. He is a Member of the Federal Republic, MFR, recipient, National Productivity Order of Merit NPOM, chieftaincy title of Nnaziruzo of Okigwe and most recently a Papal Knight by the Catholic Pontiff.
•Mr. Ogaraku writes from Owerri, Imo state