Jaivir Singh, Vice Chairman, PwC India Foundation
For me, our Values determine our aspiration and define the ‘how’ narrative of our Corporate Responsibility journey
As we move towards uncovering new possibilities and constantly rethink the way we do business, we look up to our Values to guide us to achieve our Purpose which is to build trust in society and solve important problems. So, it becomes imperative to create a safety net that helps us identify such opportunities by continuously innovating and educating ourselves, such that we can make a difference and build a sustainable future for all.
For me, our Values determine our aspiration and define the ‘how’ narrative of our journey.
Currently, Assam, Mizoram, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh, West Bengal, Odisha, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand are struggling due to the continuous rainfall. My personal visit to Assam in the month of July exposed me to the gravity of the situation that people are battling as thousands of people have been displaced and rendered homeless.
In this time of crisis, the PwC India Foundation is working towards reaching out to the states in the North-East to provide immediate and necessary relief to the people affected. An internal campaign is being run to encourage employees to come forward to contribute monetarily which will help the Foundation make a difference to the lives of the affected.
Additionally, deriving strength from our PwC Values, an example of our aspirations turning into reality is our recent initiative to make healthcare services available to children and communities living in Delhi and Haryana. Some of you may recollect that in 2015, we worked together with NGO Save the Children and jointly released a report, Forgotten voices: the world of urban children in India that delved into the needs of the children living in urban slums.
Staying true to our Value – ‘care’, we partnered with the NGO Bal Umang Drishya Sansthan (BUDS) to launch a van that provides healthcare services free of cost to the children and vulnerable communities. Interestingly, the services were to initially reach four slums in Delhi and one village in Mewat but, it was not long before the penetration of our healthcare van services reached a total of five villages within Mewat alone!
The world is talking about sustainable development and the new buzz word in town is ‘social enterprise’. But, for us, it hasn’t been simply about keeping up with a new trend as an afterthought, it is about something that has been given a lot of thought and is close to our heart. This is evident by the eight year-long association PwC has had with Social School of Entrepreneurship (SSE) globally, and now in India.
PwC India launched SSE India in 2016 to support social entrepreneurs in filling the gaps that non-profit organisations leave. What really is heartening to see are the innovative ways in which these social entrepreneurs exhibit behaviours that are aligned to our Values.
I’d like to share an instance – Recently, a girl named Lourdes Soares from Goa came with an idea to support cancer patients and their families. Within three months of her journey, she registered her enterprise!
She says that with the guidance of her mentor, Ranjan Mathur, who works with GRID Advisory as an associate director, our team and the sessions she attended not only provided her the information that she was seeking but also gave wings to her dreams…
I am also happy to share that the Earth Hour challenge held in March 2017 saw employees purchase 1321 solar lamps! The Foundation contributed an equal number of lamps and handed them over to ten villages in Bundelkhand, where we run a drought mitigation project. From single women to differently abled people and children, our lamps are making life for these individuals a little brighter.
Values aren’t just five phrases that sound good, but are a way of life, which, if followed, will make sure we leave a lasting impact. In the words of the Artist Jon Stewart: If you don’t stick to your values when they are being tested, they’re not values - they’re hobbies… And we at PwC, not only take our Values to be serious business, but also make them the very basis of our business.
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