WHILE the Covid-19 pandemic sent shockwaves across the globe, these unprecedented times, despite its darkest moments, have inspired people to come together. We witnessed acts of kindness that warmed our hearts as individuals and corporates measured up to actively support communities in need.
As a regional telecommunication infrastructure provider, edotco also saw a reason to respond to the human impact of the virus. We assessed the varying degrees of needs and earmarked the most vulnerable communities that might be overlooked.
From providing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to children’s hospitals in Cambodia to funding medical devices in the Philippines and Sri Lanka, investing in educational sanitisation programmes in Bangladesh to providing Covid-19 testing essentials to hospitals in Myanmar, deploying edotco Mobility Solutions (eMOS) at Malaysia’s main Covid-19 treatment facility for enhanced network coverage to providing daily necessities to the urban poor communities in the country, we geared our efforts towards issues that we were equipped to solve as a company.
As people rallied together to support one another, we saw the best of humanity in the face of this crisis. But taking a step back, as corporates, it is important to obtain a holistic view and focus on the long-term benefits, ensuring we weigh our contributions against societal needs and impact.
While our efforts have resulted in positive outcomes across communities, the true value of corporate citizenship comes to live when there is longevity to what we do. We intend to evolve the next phase of edotco’s initiatives to support communities post Covid-19 while fuelling societal development.
Taking learnings from the current Covid-19 pandemic, often, it is easy to overlook the objective and impact we want to create in haste of providing aid.
At edotco, we believe that when put at the forefront of a disaster response, community initiatives should not be quick fixes that merely plugs a hole.
Relief from the private sector does not necessarily need to be on a macro level but instead, it should comprise of sustainable and meaningful help that are vital to the respective beneficiaries.
As nations begin to map out their Covid-19 recovery plan, edotco sees reliable connectivity as a critical aspect to societal development.
The crisis shows us how steadfast connectivity quickly turned into a highly essential commodity during this pandemic.
Reliable and seamless connectivity was essential in enabling news outlets to keep people informed, obtaining timely updates from those on the ground, supporting emergency response teams, helping families to stay connected and ensuring businesses continuity. It is unfortunate that some countries which do not have the infrastructure for widespread broadband were affected.
Without the deployment of the right shareable infrastructure, these nations will need to brace themselves for far worse situations, as digital technologies become front and centre of our daily lives in the “new normal” that we are heading towards.
Easy to deploy solutions such as the eMOS, small cells, In Building Solutions and other next generation technologies will play an integral role in ensuring these connectivity and capacity demands are met.
With connectivity becoming more necessary now than ever, players within the telecommunications ecosystem have a responsibility to ensure that the right sharable infrastructure are accessible across the board, not just in the urban areas but also spread across rural communities.
Taking stock of and building on this experience, the pandemic has sparked an opportunity for us at edotco to refresh our corporate citizenship approach, ensuring we place greater emphasis on understanding a community’s needs and weighing it against the outcome of our initiatives.
As the crisis wears on, our efforts to ensure continued connectivity in a time of crisis will evolve into a collective effort to ensure every community is connected and no one is left behind.
Datuk Mohd Izzaddin Idris is the interim CEO of edotco Group. The views expressed here are the writer’s own.
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