December 12, 2009 marked a day of great achievement for KESC and its corporate social responsibility’s division. KESC inaugurated 2 water purification plants at Ibrahim Hyderi with a capacity of providing 50,000 gallons of clean drinking water every day to the population of 150,000 inhabitants. This inauguration was preceded by a complete awareness campaign which lasted for a fortnight. The campaign was directed specifically towards the school children and women of the community in order to make them realize the importance of clean water and personal hygiene. The team representing KESC’s CSR department collaborated with the local NGOs and lady health workers to carry out a vigorous and extensive awareness campaign visiting schools and various mohallas belonging to Ibrahim Hyderi.
Ibrahim Hyderi is one of the largest slums in South Asia and houses more then 150,000 people. Most of the diseases in this community are water borne such as Cholera, Gastro, Dysentery, Hepatitis etc. Water in Ibrahim Hyderi is an extremely scarce resource and availability of fresh, clean water is an unknown blessing in the area. The “Cleanliness Drive” carried out by the CSR team encountered many challenges and one of them was to change the general mindset towards health and hygiene. Residents were well aware of the repercussion of using dirty water but the biggest dilemma was their indifference towards the whole issue. The difference in people’s attitude before the commencement of “Cleanliness Drive” and after it is very evident. In fact most of the residents looked forward for the plants to become officially operational so that they can derive benefit out of the clean water being provided by KESC’s water filtration plants. The drive involved many sessions with children, women and elders of the community which helped KESC’s team to change their thinking process to a great extent. The visual help and presentation were indeed very fascinating for the attendees especially the aspects which focused on the long term side effects of using dirty water. By the end of the campaign 10% of the population started boiling drinking water before consuming it which was a huge accomplishment for the CSR team.
The inauguration ceremony was a success story which was attended by The Minister of Provincial Assembly Honorable Haji Muzzafar Ali Shujra, the chair person of Pakistan Fisher Folk Forum Mr. Muhammad Ali Shah, Union Council’s Nazim Mr. Sohail Jamot and General Manager CSR Ms. Zehra Mehdi along with her team. The event was hailed by all the people belonging to various NGOs who participated in mobilization of the “Cleanliness Drive”. All the honorable guests spoke words of wisdom and were jubilant on KESC’s achievement as this was the first social intervention taken place at Ibrahim Hyderi since the time of KTPS’s establishment. This social initiative contributed immensely in changing KESC’s perception in the area and was very motivating for the KESC Marketing, External Communication and CSR team which together are working day in and day out to change the negative perception that surrounds KESC.
KESC resolves to implement many such social reforms and interventions for the prosperity of Karachi and its residents. This inauguration marks a new chapter in the history of KESC and will serve as the beginning of a new era which will be applauded by all its stakeholders. This change will bring about a revolutionary change in the general perception of the public and will reduce their hostility towards the company by great measures. Our social endeavors will bring about a massive behavioral change in people which will impact KESC’s well being and development of Karachi from all aspects.