As we begin a new financial year, I wanted to share with you all, the Foundation’s proudest moments from FY17. With the thematic areas growing, our reach to our beneficiaries also grew by partnering with 27 NGOs across India.
With 9000+ girls benefiting from our sanitation programme in Ajmer, we have now expanded our reach to schools in Kolkata and Hyderabad too. Around 2000+ girls and boys have benefitted through our Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) interventions in Kolkata and Hyderabad.
The focus to support school going children to adopt safe sanitation practices continues by mobilising them to become agents of change. WASH interventions were also carried out in schools where boys who are visually impaired benefitted from the availability of blind-friendly toilets.
Through the firm’s and your continuous and generous support, our humanitarian response to natural disasters has strengthened. Our water conservation and management system based projects in ten villages of Uttar Pradesh has given farmers the option to increase their crop produce which in turn has increased their gross income. Our Humanitarian response to the Uttarakhand floods in 2013 has successfully concluded this year. The intervention included livelihood restoration programmes that helped the community to look at sustainable solutions such as developing their own poultry farming, Kiwi production, cultivation of vegetables and spices.
After the successful graduation of 16 fellows from the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) India’s first Social Start-Up programme, we are getting ready to launch two cohorts in the coming year. This year seems just as promising as last year’s batch which will see budding entrepreneurs get the skillsets they need to bring about societal change. In fact, PwC employees are actively engaged in the SSE programme by becoming mentors for the fellows as well as conducting expert sessions to empower them with the skills they need as they venture into the communities they intend on impacting positively.
To understand whether we are making a difference in the lives of our beneficiaries and to guide us further in developing standardised CR activities at PwC, a preliminary exercise on outcome - assessment has been initiated. This exercise is underway in seven of our locations that the Foundation has partnered with in different thematic areas. Through this process we aim to understand how we are making a meaningful and substantial difference.
We’ve seen many of you enthusiastically take part in activities such as Environment Week, Foundation Week, Earth Hour, Volunteering Week, to name a few, at a regional level and our regional CR coordinators are thankful for your constant support and encouragement.
With PwC employees contributing 6300+ hours involving both skilled and general volunteering, we appreciate your support in reaching out and helping our beneficiaries. I’d also like to express my sincere gratitude to our business teams across Advisory, Tax and Assurance that have supported our NGO partners through 8100+ hours of pro-bono initiatives. We really appreciate the valuable time and skillsets that you’ve brought to the table on so many of our interventions and activities that have benefitted numerous beneficiaries and stakeholders.
We’re humbled to also have received three instances of recognition from national and global platforms for the work we’ve undertaken through the PwC India Foundation. We were honoured with the Best Corporate Foundation Award at the World CSR Congress event in Mumbai that highlighted our contributions to social causes. The CSR Leadership Award was presented to us at the National CSR Leadership Congress & Awards for our ongoing efforts around corporate responsibility in India. In 2016, we were bestowed with the Best CSR Practices Award at the 6th Asia Best CSR Practices award in Singapore for being actively engaged in the communities we are present in.
Under the leadership of Deepak Kapoor, we have taken our corporate responsibility initiatives to new highs. We wish him happiness as he charts out a new path and welcome Shyamal Mukherjee as our new Chairman to lead the way.
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