Philanthropy — Solomon Oupa Obert
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“Being visually impaired has never been an obstacle or a deterrent for me. Rather, it has become an inspiration for me to do a lot more to improve the lives of the less fortunate in society,” says Solomon Oupa Obert.
Obert graduated from Limkokwing University in 2003 with a Bachelors Degree in Business Management and is currently employed at Mahalapye sub-district council. His philanthropic work started as far back as 2009 when he donated clothes and food worth P2 000 to a destitute woman in Tautswe village after her house burnt down.
He organised a charity football tournament in 2010. “When I visited Mahalapye Primary School I found the special needs class in desperate need of assistance. So I organised a football tournament and raised P5 000 for toiletries, clothes and food for 50 pupils,” says Obert.
He organised another football tournament in 2011, this time featuring a Mahalapye side and the national under-23 football team. This edition of the tournament generated P3 000 for the handicapped pupils at Mahalapye Primary.
In 2012, Orbert visited his former school, Pudologong Rehabilitation Centre for the Blind, and donated food worth P5 000 after getting assistance from Botswana Life Insurance Limited (BLIL). In his home village Matobo he donated clothes to 20 pupils at Mpipi Primary School with the assistance of Sprint Couriers in 2013.
Obert’s philanthropy earned him recognition in 2014, when he received an award by the Botswana National Youth Council (BNYC). His prize included P15 000 cash, a laptop, a trip to Japan and a two-day stay at a local hotel. He used the cash prize to register a non-profit organisation called House of Love, with the objective of helping the less fortunate members of society. He was also given an award by Botswana President Dr Ian Khama while he was still a patron of BDF XI.
Now working through House of Love, Obert hosted another football tournament in Francistown in the same year, featuring top teams like BR Highlanders, Tafic, Tasc and Ecco City Greens. Funds raised from the tournament were donated to a destitute family in Block 2 location. In 2016, once again with the assistance of Botswana Life Insurance Limited (BLIL), House of Love bought clothes, toiletry and foodstuffs worth P5 000 for Pudologong Rehabilitation Centre for the Blind. Obert also donated braille equipment for Pudologong Rehabilitation Centre for the Blind earlier this year. — SPIKE GANETSANG