The crisis that is facing the region as a result of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, as well as the threat of other seasonal hurricanes, has made it necessary for us to rethink the way we respond to humanitarian emergencies. The sad fact is that today in the markets we serve, there are families, women and children living without shelter, food and water. They need our help and they need it now. I’ve heard from many of you over the past week and what has shone through, is the desire to help. Of course we’ve done a lot with the expertise we’re deploying, the supplies we’re airlifting into affected countries, and the support we’re providing to affected customers through, for example free calls, but there’s always more we can do.
In light of this, I am proud to announce that today we have launched the Cable & Wireless Charitable Foundation, with an initial funding from our Company of US$500K to provide hurricane and eventually other relief. Our new Foundation will be used to raise funds from partners, customers – and, yes, employees – to provide support to local, regional and international agencies as they execute relief and recovery projects across the region. As part of our efforts, we will now reach out to our extensive network of partners – our employees, suppliers, customers, the broader Liberty Global family, industry and the public – to help us support the cause and multiply our efforts.
While we’re proud to make our commitment to the Foundation, I am also personally writing to each of our key partners to seek their contributions. We’re also launching a ‘‘Text To Donate’ campaign, where C&W customers in the Caribbean can pledge a $1 donation to aid the relief effort through the Foundation by texting ‘GIVE’ to shortcode 2300. Finally, we are also launching a payroll giving scheme, so that everyone of our employees who wants to make a donation from their pay can do so – further details can be found here. I’m also thrilled by the engagement we’ve had from our colleagues in the wider Liberty Global family, and am certain that we’ll see them stepping up to further fund the Foundation over the coming weeks. Our goal is to double our initial US$K donation in the coming months – and with your help I know we can do it.
The past week has been tough for a number of colleagues, and the situation in many of our territories is, for now, dire. We continue to work directly with the Country Managers of impacted countries to ensure the safety and well-being of our people and send emergency supplies on a daily basis. At moments like this I’m a firm believer that we have a duty to do all we can to help, and the establishment of the Foundation is our deep, long-term commitment to provide hurricane relief as well as fund further development initiatives in the region. Together we will make continue to make a difference and ‘Connect Communities…Transform Lives’.
Chief Executive Officer