I have a vision of seeing everyone, especially women, live a better life – Rev. Mbanisi

Paschal Emeka, Abuja

The African Givers Award, TAGA, recipient, Healing Heart Foundation founder spoke about the vision of seeing everyone, especially women, live a better life. In the late 90’s Rev. (Mrs.) Sophie Nwanneka Mbanisi founded Healing Heart Foundation for eliminating poverty in the lives of widows, less-privileged women generally and their children. Spurred by her hatred for poverty and intense repulsion of seeing women and their children suffering she trudged on gallantly to help, visualizing plucking money from tree-tops, just to achieve her goal. Lack of money troubled her deeply and having been recognized by The Africa Givers Award, she is galvanized to do much more. She spoke to our reporter.

What is the name of your foundation?

The name of my foundation is Healing Heart Foundation. I am the president and Founder.

It was founded in late 90’s, we were feeding the poor under the bridges around Fadeyi area, Onike, among others. But in the early 2000’s, we became focused – targeting the widows, indigent women and the less-privileged.

What motivated you to set up the foundation?

In fact, in our constituency, we met the needs of people, including children. We later in the middle of year 2000 adopted two public schools in our constituency, namely Estate Nursery and Primary School and Local Government Nursery and Primary School both in Isolo. We even impacted youths. I do what I do because I hate poverty and I don’t like seeing people suffering.

How many lives of your members have you impacted?

To the glory of God, I have impacted many widows – both young and old.

What kind of assistance do you offer them?

The assistance I offered and have continued to offer them ranges from empowerment, shelter, healthcare, academic support for their children, clothing, counseling, among others. My dear, God has helped me to help these women.

Are you only based in Lagos? 

Yes. And the Lagos State Government recognizes us and has encouraged us. They stand by us in all our  

activities. They incorporate us in their programmes.

I use this opportunity to say a ‘big thank you’ to Governor Sanwo-Olu and Commissioner for Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Mrs. Cecilia Dada.

How do you fund your NGO?

My foundation is funded by friends, families and well-wishers.

What difficulties do you encounter and what kind of assistance do you need?

Hmmmmm! The only challenge confronting me is money, money, money.

 If I have a well of money or a tree where money grows, I will do much more.

I will change the world on a greater level. Even the lives I’m touching

Presently, if I have money stashed somewhere, I will do much better.

I have the vision of seeing everyone, especially women, live a better life because

the whole world to me is an extension of my household.

What does this award mean to your organization?

The award is a huge encouragement to me and my team with other NGOs and stakeholders across Africa, it added velocity to our movement and ember to our fire for this work. Of a truth it reassures us that our works are seen and for sure we will push ahead and do much more.

Any suggestions or words for the organizers of The Africa Givers Award?

My advice to TAGA is that you should continue in your good work, be focused and transparent. Selection of awardees must be based strictly on performance and hard work and not on sentiment. With this, the organization will be acclaimed for integrity.

TAGA will grow to become a well-celebrated and sought-after award all over Africa.

Once again, thank you all.

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