Vodafone 2024 Annual Report

37 Vodafone Group Plc Annual Report 2024

Strategic report



Other information

Supporting vulnerable communities Recognising that some of the most vulnerable in society can fall outside our customer base and may struggle to access our commercial propositions, we continue to provide a suite of targeted services for vulnerable groups. During FY24 we continued to grow our Connected Education programme, providing access to our ready-made classroom, which includes connectivity, devices and collaboration software for students and teachers across the world. Vodafone Foundation continues to connect refugee and host community students to a quality digital education through the Instant Network Schools programme, developed and delivered in partnership with UNHCR and the UN refugee agency, in the DRC, Egypt, Kenya, South Sudan, Tanzania and Mozambique. Since 2013, we have worked with the UNHCR on Instant Network Schools to transform classrooms into multimedia learning hubs, complete with internet connectivity, sustainable solar power, classroom kits including tablets, laptops, projectors and speakers, localised digital content, and teacher training. In FY24, 32 new Instant Network Schools were deployed, taking the total number of schools in operation to 118, with over 274,000 students and 4,700 teachers having benefited from the programme. By the end of 2025, Vodafone Foundation and UNHCR are aiming to reach 500,000 refugee and host-community students and 10,000 teachers with our Connected Education programme. In addition to its work supporting refugees, Vodafone Foundation published research in October 2022 that showed 92% of teachers surveyed believe that schools have a responsibility to promote digital literacy, but only a fifth are competent in the use of digital technologies. The Foundation is working to address this through ‘SkillsUpload Jr’, which supports young people to thrive in a digital society through digital skills training for teachers and students, tools for use in schools and access to teaching materials and lesson plans via online platforms. Beyond education, the Foundation is using mobile technology with the aim of helping to protect people and save lives at scale. Through ‘m-mama’, our technology is contributing to the reduction of maternal mortality, the number one health goal of the SDGs, by increasing access to emergency transport. The first region in Tanzania to fully deploy the m-mama system saw a 38% reduction of maternal mortality 5 . The programme, which is also preparing to launch in Kenya in 2024, provides a national, 24/7 emergency transport system for women and newborns in need, by coordinating ambulances and volunteer car owners from a woman’s village or local health facility, to transport them to higher level medical care. At the same time the Foundation has also supported 2.6 million people affected by abuse and hate crime by connecting them to information, advice and support through a suite of apps. The Bright Sky platform is accessible across four continents, to anyone who is concerned about domestic abuse. In addition, the UK app, Zoteria promotes the safety and wellbeing of the LGBTQ+ community. Click to read more www.vodafone.com/vodafone-foundation

Beyond our direct customers, we are working to support MSMEs in our supply chain. We offer optional supply chain financing, which allows suppliers to leverage Vodafone’s credit position to access cheaper funding and liquidity. This has no impact on Vodafone’s commercially negotiated payment terms. Digitalising key sectors: agriculture and healthcare According to the Food and Agriculture Organization, by 2050, the world will need to produce 70% more food than current levels. 1 There is also a growing need to address the environmental impact of agriculture. Through Vodacom’s subsidiary Mezzanine, we are helping to digitalise agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa through a second generation eVuna platform. eVuna is Mezzanine’s smallholding agriculture product suite. The product suite includes various software as a service (SaaS) offerings, as well as a Marketplace. The eVuna software line offered to farmers includes dairy management, seasonal and evouchering. In Kenya, using eVuna evouchering, Safaricom supported the Kenyan Ministry of Agriculture, Land, and Fisheries (‘MoALF’) with the rollout of a government fertiliser subsidy to over 5.9 million smallholder farmers in around 40 counties throughout Kenya. These vouchers can be used to buy inputs to support maize, rice, and coffee cultivation. Another solution we have in Kenya is our dairy management software, an SMS-based system that digitally records and reconciles litres of milk delivered by each farmer to the milk cooperative. The system also stores the information on a client-facing dashboard, which provides accurate records of each day’s produce by automatically adding the amounts reported. Following this, the totals are sent to farmers via a daily SMS, in replacement of a manual dairy milk card which was used for many years. In FY24, this catered to over 50,000 2 dairy farmers. In South Africa, Mezzanine continues to support the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform, and Rural Development (‘DALRRD’). This programme has issued over 270,000 vouchers 3 to smallholder farmers, worth a combined value of over ZAR 1.6 billion 3 . The global healthcare sector continues to grapple with unprecedented transformation and challenges, as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic persist. The convergence of an ageing population, a shortage of skilled health and social care professionals, and a challenging economic climate has continued to disrupt healthcare systems worldwide 4 . Amidst these challenges, the sector has witnessed significant digitalisation efforts, including the expanding role of electronic health monitoring solutions and the adoption of artificial intelligence (‘AI’) and analytics. At the core of these efforts lies the crucial role of robust connectivity infrastructures. Technologies like 5G are already making a significant impact and provide numerous use cases that simplify the work of healthcare professionals. In Portugal, we introduced an innovative solution called ‘Hospital@ Home’. This remote patient monitoring solution enables healthcare professionals to monitor and clinically evaluate vital patient data, including blood pressure, heart rate, blood glucose and more. The connected solution ensures uninterrupted capture and secure transmission of patient data to medical professionals. In Germany, we established dedicated 5G networks at Frankfurt University Hospital and University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein. These networks, with their low latency, facilitate diagnostic data transmission, enabling clinicians to make timely patient diagnoses.

Notes 1. FAO, 2024.

2. Cumulative figure from 1 April 2019 to 31 March 2024. 3. Cumulative figure from 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2024. 4. OECD, 2023. 5. Percentage reduction since 2018.

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