Leonard Cheshire Disability appoints tobacco company as corporate partner

Japan Tobacco International, which manufactures billions of cigarettes each year, will fund an IT programme by the disability charity

Tobacco company becomes charity partner
Tobacco company becomes charity partner

The disability charity Leonard Cheshire Disability has appointed Japan Tobacco International, one of the world's largest tobacco manufacturers, as a corporate partner and has accepted a substantial donation from the firm.

The company, the international arm of the world's third largest tobacco manufacturer, Japan Tobacco, has entered a five-year partnership agreement with the charity, according to Leonard Cheshire's annual report. Under the agreement, JTI, which owns brands including Silk Cut, Benson & Hedges and Camel, will fund an IT programme run by the charity.

A spokesman for Leonard Cheshire Disability said JTI's support would enable thousands of disabled adults to have access to specially adapted computers and would allow about 600 disabled adults to use computers in their own homes.

A source close to the charity, who asked not to be named, said JTI had agreed to donate hundreds of thousands of pounds to the charity. However, both JTI and Leonard Cheshire Disability refused to comment on the amount donated.

A statement from a spokesman for charity said: "We can confirm that JTI supports our Discover IT programme. We are not disclosing the amount donated or the terms of our agreement, but I can confirm that this support for Leonard Cheshire Disability is part of JTI's wider contribution to the communities in which they operate. No further comment will be provided."

A spokesman for JTI said: "We can confirm that JTI has made a donation to Leonard Cheshire Disability as part of a long-term programme of support. It is not our policy to disclose donation amounts."

According to JTI's website, the company has sold 434.9 billion cigarettes worldwide, but it does not specify the time period that this covers.

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