The whole world is now affected by the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic. As an operator in 26 countries in Europe, Africa and the Middle East and with a presence in more than 200 countries, we are doing everything we can to support our customers and colleagues, staying true to our Human Inside philosophy and purpose. We’re also working on the front line in many countries to ensure technology continues to benefit as many people as possible. Our commitment: do our absolute best in this emergency situation to support governments, health services, hospitals, parents and school children, fellow citizens and businesses. Here is an overview of some of our latest initiatives.
“As a trusted partner, Orange gives everyone the keys to a responsible digital world.” Every day, we do everything in our power to ensure digital technology benefits citizens, communities and whole regions. We fight against all forms of digital exclusion, whether related to age, disability or economic or social circumstances. During this health crisis, our purpose is coming to life more than ever through concrete actions and solidarity initiatives carried out by all of our operating countries.
Responding to the health crisis, as close as possible to where our help is needed
Taking care of people and preventing the virus from spreading are top priorities. To contribute, we’re allocating €8 million to help prevent, protect and treat. We’re also supplying personal protective equipment in all countries where we are present. An emergency fund of €3 million will be paid through the Orange Foundation to our 27 subsidiaries, completing the €5 million already committed by our Orange Foundations and Group subsidiaries in Europe and Africa.
Because each subsidiary has already established many vital partnerships with local organisations, health and government authorities, we’ll be able to allocate these funds just where they’re needed for the maximum benefit in the field.
— Stéphane Richard (@srichard) April 1, 2020
Preventing the virus from spreading
By helping to relay information from each national health service, we’re supporting local communications efforts to promote the latest protective measures in line with each country’s recommendations. We’re offering open access information platforms and creating personal safety campaigns.
To make sure our campaigns reach as many people as possible, we’re relaying them across all channels: web, SMS, voice messages and devices dedicated to people with disabilities.
Relay health recommendations by Orange Cameroon:
Ensuring service continuity
Our customer services, technical and professional services teams are fully mobilised to ensure our customers continue to enjoy the best possible connectivity, paying particular attention to emergency services and hospital facilities.
This is the title of one of the campaigns produced by Orange in Spain, taking the place of usual sales and promotional activities. A similar campaign has been rolled out across many other countries and in several languages. Now more than ever, people are relying on telecoms networks to keep in touch with loved ones and continue to work from home. Our #HérosDuRéseau (#NetworkHeroes) are fully mobilised so that everyone can stay at home while remaining closer to what matters.
Technology can’t replace your father, but it can bring you closer to him.
All Orange subsidiaries have launched new offers to help customers maintain essential relationships with their loved ones. For example, Orange France is providing an extra 10GB to each of its 16 million Orange and Sosh mobile subscribers who have used their data allocation for 1 to 30 April 2020.
Guaranteeing security for medical data
When it comes to business continuity, cybersecurity is an essential condition for hospitals and care centres. To ensure caregivers can continue the vital task of taking care of their patients, teams at Orange Cyberdefense are taking action to ensure their digital platforms are fully protected.
We’re using our expertise to help protect the medical community against cyber attacks. We have set up a dedicated hotline for hospital facilities to get the latest advice and understand what they need to do to stay safe in cyberspace. In the event of any service interruption caused by a cyber attack comprising multiple malicious requests rendering a server inaccessible, we can activate immediate mitigation solutions to reduce the damage caused. Several local Orange Cyberdefense entities around the world have set up similar initiatives.
Enabling everyone to learn and access culture
Even with our new stay-at-home measures in force, school children (and their parents) can continue to follow lessons as “normally” as possible via free educational content, which also supports teachers. From Digitaliada, which is a learning management system in Romania, to webinars helping teachers in Poland improve their remote teaching skills, Orange covers a full range of solutions…
What’s more, a number of Orange countries in Africa and the Middle East have committed to offering free mobile connectivity to a selection of school and university content, which is also free. Lessons are available in French, English and Arabic, and hosted at an Orange data centre located in Côte d’Ivoire. Not only is the full Wikipedia encyclopaedia available but also Khan academy courses as well as hundreds of videos proposed by the French Ministry of Education’s Réseau Canopé. Training courses developed by the virtual universities of Senegal and Tunis as well as IUT online classes are also available free of charge.
Find out more about online content available through the Orange Foundation, to access a whole range of cultural content whenever you like from home.
Helping people communicate with their elderly relatives via TV
To reduce the feeling of isolation among older populations, who may feel uncomfortable using technology, we have developed a solution that enables them to receive a message from their children, grandchildren or friends in the ad breaks that run during their favourite TF1 and France Télévision programmes from 16 to 26 April.
Find out more on on-reste-ensemble.fr and discover how to upload a video message and notify loved ones of the date and time the message will be broadcast (France only).
Innovating to help combat the crisis
Solidarity FabLabs, supported by the Orange Foundation, have started to manufacture protective visors for health professionals. The initiative, which is helping to prevent the virus from spreading, started in the Orange Digital Center in Tunisia in partnership with the Ministry of Health. Several Solidarity FabLabs across Africa and Europe are now manufacturing similar personal protective equipment. Exceptional financial assistance will enable some 40 FabLabs to produce 20,000 approved visors to be distributed among nearby hospital facilities. We’re encouraging our entire ecosystem – who we have always applauded for their creativity – to work on innovative emergency solutions, however small, revolutionary or technologically advanced.
Encouraging solidarity between Orange teams
Some Orange teams have been working flat out for several weeks. An internal volunteering platform “Let me help” enables employees who are working remotely to offer their spare time to support their colleagues. Those who have the desire, availability and a bit of free time can respond to requests for reinforcement, full time or part time, in a spirit of teamwork and solidarity, which is fundamental to Orange’s DNA.