Mercury Int. doles out U.S$ 10,000 to save 15 - year - old life 

By: Sahr Morris Jr. (Intern)

Mercury International Charitable Foundation chairman Samir Hassanyeh handing over the cheque to Mr. Garber

Sierra Leone’s leading Sports Betting and Lottery Company, Mercury International has last Friday provided the sum of U.S $ 10,000(Le73.5 million) as a lifesaving venture in helping a 15-year-old, Frederick Garber to undergo a kidney transplant operation in India.

In an emotional ceremony, the chairman of Mercury International Charitable Foundation Samir Hassanyeh before handing over the cheque said, the company’s philanthropic gesture is part of their cooperate social responsibility and such an undertaking is done to save the life of a teenager.

He said: " We were approached by Umaru Fofonah on behalf of the family, and as a charitable foundation we immediately came in to rescue the situation by providing the much needed support to help save the life of the young lad, as the money provided will cover their travelling to India, and all other cost embedded for the operation."

Chairman Hassanyeh also pointed out that the request of the Garber family through Umaru Fofanah falls within the priority areas of consideration for the request of the Mercury International Charitable Foundation.

"The father, Joseph Garber will be donating one of his livers for this operation and this is a sacrifice every father can do for a child," the Mercury International Charitable Foundation chairman said and assured the family of further financial assistance towards the boy's livelihood. 

BBC stringer who also doubles as volunteer for Sierra Leone Red Cross, Mr. Umaru Fofonah revealed that few months back the family started with a trust fund to save the life of Frederick Garber who is a senior secondary school pupil of the Albert Academy.

He said: "Someone directed them to me to make an appeal through social media and I assured them of engaging Mercury International Charitable Foundation, which I did and after submitting a proposal to the company, I feel proud to see the company responding 100% to what was requested for.

"I feel honoured for what Mercury did as this is a life-saving enterprise. I Hope the transplant will be successful and am grateful to mercury international for helping to save the kid from dying, and also the India consulate who has also been very helpful towards this," Fofonah said.

In an uncontrollable tear after receiving the cheque, Mr. Joseph Garber, father of Frederick, revealed his son had been suffering for the past 4 years with the sick adding that it has been a challenging and difficult time for his family.

He also expressed his delight for receiving such an unthinkable support from Mercury International and also thanked Umaru Fofonah for his support toward his family.

"I am very much grateful for such a timely intervention, as I was never expecting such from Mercury International. I hope the almighty God will keep my son for me because he has ordained this for us, I was never expecting this," Mr. Garber said.

Mercury International Chief Finance Officer, Mr. Ekundayo Rowe said the company’s support is not about helping humanity but saving lives with the help of the almighty God.

He said: "This is not a novelty for us because we have done and will continue to help Sierra Leoneans from all works of life with such gesture. However, we can only continue to do so if our valued customers and all out there continue to play and be part of our products we offer".