With lock-down measures still in place in the country making transport between counties impossible and thousands left to wonder where their next meal is coming from due to the economic impact of the pandemic so far, a significant chunk of Nairobi now depends on relatives from upcountry to send food. I should know because I’ve been getting a size-able gunia delivered every two weeks.
But what happens to our family on the other side? What if they aren’t in a position to send over potatoes, bananas and cereals and you are in a position to do so? This is where Copia comes in.
In a bid to streamline and precedence its campaign Bonga for Good, Safaricom has partnered with Copia, the first e-commerce platform in Kenya that provides essential goods to customers in rural and peri-urban areas across various parts of the country. These goods include such as foodstuff, household goods, hygiene cleaning products as well as farm and construction products.
The Bonga for Good initiative, launched on 3rd April 2020, is on the forefront to empower customers to donate their Bonga Points to those in needy as a show of goodwill. The campaign also sanctions customers by handing them extra cash flow to buy food and essential services by enhancing the value of Bonga Points by 50%, from 20 cents to 30 cents with the sole aim of cushioning Kenyans against the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bonga For Good has also seen corporates donate their points to either employees or charity causes of their choice, showing an urgent necessity among individuals and families to access essential goods and services during this period.
The partnership between Safaricom and Copia seeks to get more people, especially in the rural areas of Kenya, to know about the Bonga for Good initiative and how they can buy goods using Bonga Points.
“Given the expanse of our footprint today in central Kenya, Rift Valley all the way to western, and the fact that we service about half a million customers, Safaricom has realized there is a great opportunity for Copia to drive communication directly to our over 11,500 agents and 500,000 customers to ensure that they know they can actually use their Bonga Points for shopping because we communicate directly to the end customer,” said Catherine Mudachi, Marketing Vice President, Copia.
The partnership comes at a time where Kenya has experienced a sharp increase in on-demand courier services across the country since COVID-19 was declared a pandemic. The government’s imposed restrictions on movement and physical distancing to counter and control the spread of COVID-19 has also necessitated the demand for courier services.
As a member of the Retail Trade Association of Kenya (RETRAK), Copia appears among the list of essential service providers, which means they can operate outside of curfew hours so that their agents across the country can continue to provide daily essential products to their customers across the country.
“We have all the required documentation. We have also ensured that we have worked with different police stations across the region to ensure they understand who Copia is and the fact that we have been listed as an essential service,” said Catherine Mudachi, Marketing Vice President, Copia.
So far, Copia has received massive support from Kenyans, especially during this period of COVID-19, with curfew hours and restricted movement in and out of Nairobi.
“Customers have realized that we do keep to our brand promise, which is Maisha Rahisi, making living easier every day. Despite the pandemic, we will do whatever it takes to ensure that we continue to meet their needs and essential items every day so that they don’t feel a huge impact from the current pandemic,” said Catherine.
Safaricom has further extended the Bonga For Good Campaign for an extra 30 days to 3rd June 2020. This is to enable customers to continue using their points to buy goods and services and possibly donate to those in need.
“By extending the initiative for a second month, we want to support our customers further to tap into the value of their Bonga Points to assist those in need as a sign of goodwill,” said Peter Ndegwa, Safaricom CEO.
To redeem or transfer points, customers should dial *126#. Customers can redeem as little as Kshs 1 via Lipa na Bonga at key merchants or transfer their points to those in need.