BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN – Bruneian telco DST has received an ASEAN award for its corporate social responsibility initiatives.

DST was one of the 21 recipients of the 4th ASEAN Rural Development and Poverty Eradication Leadership Awards during a ceremony in Myanmar.

In a press statement, the telco said the award was an acknowledgement of non-government organizations (NGOs) and private sector’s contributions towards rural/community development and poverty reduction in ASEAN member states.

Receiving the ASEAN award for DST was Assistant General Manager Amir Pehin Datu Pekerma Bijaya Col. (B) Dato Paduka Hj Hussin.

The award recognised DST’s Ihsan Kasih projects that focus on rural and ICT development. These include the annual Ihsan Kasih charity drive for underprivileged families during Ramadhan.

The charity drive also involves DST collaborating and creating partnerships with other parties to reach out to more families and support local business communities.

DST said one of its charity drive success stories involved a family of five orphaned siblings in a rural area.

As part of DST’s focus on creating a sustainable CSR initiative, DST offered the eldest son of the five siblings full-time employment, enabling him to earn a living and support his siblings’ education while pursuing part-time studies. He graduated with a higher national diploma in business and management in 2017 and is still employed with DST.

DST has also partnered with University Technology Brunei (UTB) on developing smart agriculture initiatives in Brunei Darussalam through a memorandum of understanding signed in August 2019.

The telco said it will continue to engage with the government, external agencies and NGOs on CSR initiatives as well as agriculture and smart cities solutions by delivering real, long-term benefits to businesses and citizens.

Also present during the award ceremony were Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports YB Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Hj Aminuddin Ihsan Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Hj Abidin, Myanmar Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation Dr Aun Thu, and Deputy Secretary-General for ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Kung Phoak.

DST was also invited to attend the 8th ASEAN Public Private Partnership Forum on Rural Development and Poverty Eradication from November 6-8 and the opening ceremony of the 11th ASEAN Ministers Meeting on Rural Development and Poverty Eradication.