Enriching lives and building a better world

Ansty Ezra Kalema

What you need to know:

  • Let us embrace the transformative power of philanthropy, drawing inspiration from the selfless acts of those who have paved the way

Philanthropy, derived from the Greek word “philanthropia” meaning love for mankind, is a powerful force that has the potential to transform societies and improve the lives of individuals across the globe.  

In its essence, philanthropy is not merely about financial contributions but encompasses a spirit of compassion, empathy, and a shared commitment to make the world a better place.  

Zimbabwean philanthropist Tsitsi Masiyiwa when asked why he was passionate about helping society he noted, “I give not because I have, rather I have because I give.” This phenomenon in a nutshell is the mantra that several philanthropists or enthusiasts of charity go by.

For the believers, in the good old book, the Bible in Acts 20:35, Apostle Paul quotes Jesus saying, “It’s more blessed to give than receive”. 

Growing up, I drew inspiration from the way my mother cared for those around us. Whereas she wasn’t the wealthiest person, she had a deeper connection to the community in which we were raised. Her various acts of kindness and generosity were outstanding, and they carried along various lessons for us the bystanders.

My mother, a humble yet extraordinary woman, possessed a unique ability to empathize with the struggles of those around her.

Despite facing her own challenges, she always found a way to extend a helping hand to those in need. Her actions spoke louder than words, teaching me that true fulfillment is found in the service of others.

It is this priceless lesson that has fuelled my passion for philanthropy and shaped the purpose behind every endeavour I undertake.

One of the key lessons imparted was the importance of empowering individuals and communities to become architects of their own destinies. 

I am convinced that philanthropy is a beacon that can illuminate the path towards a more compassionate and equitable world and is a force capable of dismantling barriers, bridging divides, and creating a tapestry of interconnectedness that transcends social, economic, and cultural boundaries.

At the tail-end of 2023 during the festive season, I joined colleagues in a visit to Bless A Child foundation on Sir. Apollo Kaggwa road in Makerere Kikoni.

The foundation is renowned for supporting children battling cancer and other life-threatening conditions, by providing them with a place to stay and even learn while they receive their medical attention from some of the specialist or general government hospitals.

Many of these children hail from outside of the capital city, Kampala and traveling back and forth can be both expensive and exhausting. Spending time with them, breaking bread and playing games was an experience I cannot take for granted and hope that everyone in their lifetime has a chance to walk a journey with those around them that need some form of support – it goes a long way in reminding them that they are loved and building their esteem, more than the food or drinks or cloths that may be taken. They feel human!

Let us embrace the transformative power of philanthropy, drawing inspiration from the selfless acts of those who have paved the way. My mother’s legacy continues to remind me that each of us has the capacity to be a catalyst for positive change.  

Together, through the ripple effect of our philanthropic endeavours’, we can create a legacy of love that transcends time and transforms the world for generations to come.

Ansty Ezra Kalema, transmission engineer at MultiChoice Uganda.