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Friday, May 9, 2014

How Corporate Social Responsibility Can Promote Inclusive Growth

Corporate Social Responsibility is the buzz word in corporate world these days. In India, corporate employees voluntarily visit various organisations and engage in different kinds of activities in developing the community. This includes, working with NGOs like HOPE Foundation, Dr. Reddy Foundation etc for soft skills development of the children and youth in the education centres established by these NGOs, working with NGOs for imparting vocational skills to women to promote self-employment, and visiting NGOs to conduct various workshops to closely engage with underprivileged children to motivate them and help them choose a better career and grow in their life.

Persuasive Engagement Helps The Community Grow Better

The most important impact of this engagement of volunteers from corporate with NGOs is of cultural and educational impact. Children and youth in these NGOs interact with the intellectuals and hence get the benefitted out of discussing about the volunteers’ educational background and professional experiences. Professionals promote by narrating their own stories and the hardship they faced in reaching where they are now. This helps in boosting up the confidence of the children who are often not so confident. This helps the children set their goals better. For example, when I interacted with one of the students in HOPE Foundation computer centre, I asked, “What is your goal?”. He replied, “I am working as a bike mechanic and I wish I would set up my own mechanic shop”. What’s wrong in that? Yes, there is something wrong. He is studying 11th standard and is irrelevant to his aspirations. He doesn't have confidence in pursuing higher studies because of financial instability. But, he is not the only person in India facing such a situation. How do those get their degrees? Questions like this have answers and these answers can be said by those intellectuals to these ignorant children and help them grow in their career. In economics, we have something called, “Underemployment”, which happens when a person with high capability doing a work which actually requires very less capability compared to his.

Quality Of Education

There are a lot of criticism regarding the quality of school education in India. Instead of just criticising it, I would urge the intelligentsia to contribute in improving the quality of education. There are organisations like “Teach For India” doing a good job in this area. The scholars and professionals in India should get themselves wet by jumping into this less focussed area. It is this community which helped us to reach where we are today. It is the duty of every citizen of India to give back to the community!
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