Sustainability is no longer just a buzzword. Businesses around the world are realizing the benefits from embedding it in their operations. Every company which incorporates Corporate Social responsibilty as its operations has to evolve the practices at regular intervals.
As an engine of social progress, CSR has helped companies live up to their responsibilities as global citizens and local neighbors in a fast-changing world. Acting in a socially responsible manner is more than just an ethical duty for a company, it is something that simply means giving back to the society.
WHEN A MARCH BECOMES A MOMENT
The term Corporate Social Responsibility was coined to create sensitivity amongst business houses towards the environmental and social responsibility of business. Today, the term is not only restricted to the office periphery but also describes the expansion of global movement, one that reflects the increasing alignment between the objectives of the international community and those of the private sector.
The Corporate World today is working on shared goals as building stable markets, combating corruption, safeguarding the environment and ensuring social inclusion, resulting in an unprecedented rise in partnerships between business, civil society, governments – and the United Nations. In fact in the present scenario funds and programmes are relying on business collaboration in one way or the other to address critical issues.
This new amalgamation of the society and the business fraternity is rooted with the notion that the corporate set-up of a developing nation like India should be made a part of the solution to global challenges.
At the same time it is very important for any economy to know if the CSR Strategies adopted by companies are aligned with the universal values urged by the society at large.
NURTURING THE LITTLE ONES
Through CSR Initiatives, the Corporates run a movement that captures the most fragile segment of the society, Children. Business impacts the wide range of children’s rights, which goes beyond child labor. But it also has enormous power to improve the rights of children and protect them from harm through the way in which it treats employees, operates its facilities, develops and markets its products, provides its services, and exerts its influence on economic and social development.
The concept of CSR goes way beyond philanthropy. Businesses today have the power to mould the lives for the most marginalized children. Despite the growth in corporate responsibility and the business and human rights agenda, children as stakeholders and their rights still are not being addressed explicitly within the private sector.
Some of the CSR initiatives which are completely Child-focused contribute to sustainable development, including the health and the welfare of children.
REPOSITIONING THE SOCIETY
Corporate Social Responsibility begins with a company’s value system and a principled approach to doing business. It then goes on to carry forward the operations in ways that, at a minimum, meet fundamental responsibilities in the areas of human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption. Responsible businesses enact the same values and principles wherever they have a presence, and know that good practices in one area do not offset harm in another. By incorporating the Global Compact principles into strategies, policies & procedures, and establishing a culture of integrity, companies are not only upholding their basic responsibilities to people and planet, but also setting the stage for long-term success.
The responsibility of private businesses in furthering inclusive development comes in the wake of the increasing role of market economy and globalization in the lives of the people in every society and nation.
WORLD ON WHEELS
It was a beautiful evening of November 19, 2016, when HP Inc. announced a commitment to build and deploy 48 self-contained, Internet-enabled digital inclusion and learning labs aimed at driving digital literacy, education programming, entrepreneurship training, and other community services in rural India.
Each 20-seat, IT-enabled HP WoW vehicle is equipped with HP computing and printing equipment, such as HP Thin Clients, an HP Workstation, and an HP office jet all-in-one printer, as well as software suites, cloud integration and e-learning tools, like HP Classroom Manager, HP video book & HP Life.
HP WoW opens doors to Digital Literacy Training, EDP Training for youth, E education for students (K-12), Common Citizenship Activities, Financial Inclusions; Video conferencing etc to citizens in the remotest part of the country. Over weekends, HP WoW also acts as a mobile Common Services Center, where people can access social services such as applying for an Aadhaar identification card, opening an online bank account, paying bills online, applying for licenses, obtaining records, and participating in e-commerce. The lab can further be used for audio and video conferencing services, such as maternal and child health sessions for expectant and new moms, agricultural training for farmers, career counselling for students and youth, and remote volunteering opportunities like mentoring and skill sharing.
On the environment part, the vehicles are designed with leading technology to reduce emissions and maximize energy efficiency. Each mobile lab is powered by 10 high-efficiency solar panels and battery packs, generating and storing enough power to sustain the lab’s daily energy requirements even during cloudy/rainy days. The vehicle also has a silent generator installed below the deck. Needless to mention, entire vehicle could be connected to direct AC supply wherever available.
HP World on Wheels (HP WoW), is a part of HP’s global initiative to create opportunities in underserved communities and empower people everywhere to build a better, more prosperous life. It also supports the Indian government’s Digital India initiative to transform the country into a digitally empowered society and knowledgeable economy. The program is expected to serve about 6,400 Indian villages, impacting more than 15 million people in the next six years.”
CREATING A BETTER TOMORROW
Today, Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) is India’s largest private sector enterprise with businesses across the energy and materials value chain and a strong presence in the rapidly expanding retail, telecommunications and media sectors.
RIL’s diverse projects and operations touch lives of people in many ways and create value by helping in overall and holistic development of communities across multiple geographies. Through its various initiatives, the group endeavors to play a relevant role by serving communities and projects that address gaps in basic societal requirements.
As a responsible corporate citizen, RIL has embarked on several initiatives of scale in the education, healthcare and livelihood domains. RIL endeavors to continuously learn from its experiences and adapt its policies and implementation strategy on an ongoing basis.
Conscious business decisions by the group have directly and indirectly created value for multiple stakeholders and helped in improving lives of the people. RIL has always believed in creating societal value by providing affordable products and services which have assisted in the growth of relevant industries. Across all its areas of operations, there are inherent linkages and interconnections with the immediate and long term societal impact.
In addition, RIL impacts lives particularly of several hundreds of thousand underprivileged people through our CSR activities. RIL seeks to continue its contribution to the society through its distinct value proposition that meets the needs of millions of people, enhancing their lives through healthcare, improving quality of living by providing education and enabling livelihoods by creating employment opportunities-through the following:
- For the Business- value created for the society through business.
- By the Business- value created through CSR initiatives across different operating facilities with appropriate linkages to local communities in which they operate.
- Beyond Business- value created through interventions for the communities in diverse geographies across India.