In the enhancement of its school career guide mentorship initiative rolled out last year, FDH Bank plc reached out to Chiradzulu Secondary School where it donated 80 mattresses worth K2 million for the school’s hostels and also pledged to award students if they attain single digit Malawi School Certificate of Education (MSCE) examination points.
This was pledged at the school on Friday by FDH Bank plc Deputy Managing Director, George Chitera, during his ‘career talk for the future’ as he also made a personal commitment to be paying school fees, uniforms, shoes and other needs for the most underprivileged but very outstanding performing students.
“But with one condition — your school management will identify the best performing needy students but will have to continue getting high performance results throughout their duration of their studies here,” he said.
“Always thrive for high performances which will always reward you as you pave way for your future careers which you must choose now. This is the stage where you choose your career and with guidance from your teachers and others, like we are doing at FDH Bank, you shall achieve your dreams.”
Chiradzulu Secondary School has a career counselling committee, headed by Mary Sande, which engages with various professionals of repute to inspire the students in career guidance and need to aim for high academic performances.
Thus Chitera inspired the young minds that FDH Bank and the rest of the corporate world rely on the youths to sustain their businesses for future progress, reiterating that the future leadership of this country relies on the youth.
“But we need youths who will be well educated — and not just having good qualifications but those that are disciplined, innovative and prove to work in togetherness.
“So, I say to you that don’t compete with others — be your own competitor while also sharing your ideas and knowledge with others because that is what is required of you when you join us in the corporate world.”
Chitera, in the company of Chrispin Chikwama (Head of Human Resource); Mwiza Madanitsa (Director of Operations & Management) and several members of staff, impressed on the young minds that if the private sector does not invest on youth, the country cannot progress in its economic and social development.
“But it also depends on you to work hard by choosing and focusing on the careers you aspire to attain. Be disciplined in your studies and above all trust in God.”
One interesting part of the career talk was the inclusion of a sign language interpreter — a Form 2 student Grace Kapichi, who said she learnt sign language from her fellow students, who are deaf.
In his preamble, Chitera wowed the students when he introduced himself as: “I am George Chitera, I come from Chitera Village, T/A Chitera in Chiradzulu District” which was welcomed by a huge round of applause from the students as Chitera Village is the neighbouring community to the school.
When launching the first-of-its-kind nationwide school career guidance mentorship initiative last year Chichiri Secondary School, Group Chief Executive Officer, William Mpinganjira also inspired students that they chose Chichiri through his own suggestion since he was emotionally attached to it as he had gone through his early education at the secondary’s neighbouring feeder primary school.
The Bank also donated 62 desks and 105 chairs worth K3 million to solve one of the challenges the school faced.
The initiative was rolled out in celebration of the International Day of the African Child, and just as Chitera told the Chiradzulu students, the son to FDH Holdings Plc founder, Dr. Thomson Mpinganjira impressed on the MSCE candidates that his father had a dream as he worked in the financial services industry to establish his own bank — which he did.
And it was not a dream that the current generation can also achieve if they aspire to found their own companies in the future, Mpinganjira had said, which Chitera also attested to with the Chiradzulu students.
This is part of FDH Bank’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) which was explained to the students as giving back to the community from which it thrives, and at the launch Mpinganjira had said: “When you will finish your academic studies, you will join us in the corporate world and you shall be required to give back to the community that supports you.
“This is called sustainable living — taking care of our communities just as we do with the environment by replacing the trees we use. On this Day of the African Child, FDH Bank is taking care of the community that has educated us so that we can work together in the development of the country.”
The Career Guidance initiative was mooted at the company that every member of staff should play a role in this mentorship in order to own any CSR initiative that they shall be carrying out.
Mpinganjira had said if a CSR is not made personal by a member of staff, then it cannot work and every member of staff in the communities that FDH Bank operates in across the country, would be expected to be involved in the Career Guidance mentorship.
Established in 2002, FDH Bank plc became the third largest bank in the country by 2017 having a footprint all over the country after two of the top financial services provider — National Bank of Malawi and Standard Bank that were formed many years ago from colonial days.