The Madonna International Charity Peace Award (MICPA) was founded by Rev. Fr. Emmanuel M.P. Edeh C.S.Sp to foster abundantly, the acts of practical and effective charity. Mrs. Elizabeth Edeh was Rev. Fr. Emmanuel M.P. Edeh's mother. She was a woman known by all around her for her kind, helpful and generous heart. She was a very humble and prayerful woman who cared so much for the widows, the abjectly poor, the orphan, the sick, the handicapped-blind, deaf and dumb and the suffering people in the society. She loved taking care of any person in need that came in contact with her.
Although Mama may not be counted easily among the group that is referred to as rich, she shared whatever little amount of money, food and materials that entered her palm with the needy around her. She supported and cared for all the widows around her within Akpugo, in Nkanu, Enugu State. She was a mother to all and took care of other people's children, as she would her own. It was the proceeds from her petty sale of palm kernels and cassavas from her farm around her house that she used to carry out her charitable works. Mama touched the life of any one who came in contact with her and it was this character that earned her the name “Mama Omeogo” (Charitable Mother or Mother of Charity).
It is on record how during her lifetime, Mama Omeogo at festivities like Christmas/New Year and Easter, would invite widows, orphans and other disadvantaged people around the town Akpugo to her house; she would entertain them very well and share raw food oil, clothings and some other items to them to take home. She also hosted members of The Sisters of Jesus The Saviour (SJS), the female Religious Congregation founded by Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Edeh, in her house every Christmas and Easter. She would entertain them, serving them food and drinks personally.
During her lifetime, Mama Omeogo could not see anybody in need without working something out to put back smile on the face of the person. Story has it that Mama would make use of whatever was in the house to do charity, and that she would carry everything in the house to give to people, retaining nothing for her family to enjoy. Mama's kind and generous heart was such that she carried her act of charity giving to where ever she found herself. The last charity she did was on her death bed in the Evolution hospital at Trans Ekulu, Enugu. When she heard the wailing of a woman in labour, Mama Omeogo instructed the Rev. Sister attending to her to take the last amount of money in her bag to the woman in labour. Her action was to help the woman to buy all the necessary things needed for the care of the baby after delivery.
From the year, 1986, every time she came to Elele to visit and pray, Mama Omeogo would give to her son, Fr. Emmanuel M.P. Edeh, all of the little money she realized during the month from her farm to save it for her for future use. She did this every year until her death in February 1996.
By the time of her death, Mama's savings had amounted to 360.000 Naira. This was a fairly bit amount of money at that time. That spirit that was in Mama, inspired Fr. Emmanuel to plan and carry out works of charity in the most practical and effective ways. He used this amount to set up some small scale projects so that the proceeds from such projects would be used to carry on charity work. While the proceeds realized from the projects were used to sustain the poor, the sick, destitute, orphans, the homeless and others, the project also served as charity to other people such as school dropouts and frustrated youths who were employed to work in these small projects.
One of such small projects was the establishment of Umuofo Community Bank at No. 83 Aba/ Owerri Road, Aba on December 15th 1992. This was the second Community Bank, second to Ibeto Community Bank, established in Nigeria. At that time 240, 000 Naira was required to be deposited with the Central bank of Nigeria to enable a community or a group of individuals to establish a Community Bank. Hence it was easy for the amount of Mama Omeogo's money to be used in establishing the Umuofo Community Bank even when Mama Omeogo was alive.
According to Fr. Edeh, during the process of establishing the little Bank, few of his friends helped him to make sure that the bank was successfully established. By 1995 Umuofor received an Award from the Federal Government of Nigeria as the best managed Community Bank out of over 600 Community Banks in the Country. Later on, from Umuofor Community bank was established what we had as Mayfresh Savings and Loans Ltd. (Mortgage Bankers) with its headquarters at No. 83 Aba/Owerri Road, Aba. This was commissioned in December 1995 by Alhaji Bici, the then Managing Director of Federal Mortgage Bank. By February 2014, the same Mayfresh Savings and Loans developed into a full-fledged mortgage bank now known as Mayfresh Mortgage Bank Ltd.