Monday, 15 October 2018

Kshamata - CSR Capacity Building workshop for NGOs in Pune


Kshamata – CSR training workshop for NGOs
5th October 2018 Pune
BSE Sammaan conducted 2nd of their “Kshamata - Capacity Building of NGOs on CSR” series of workshops in Pune on 5th October 2018. The same was held in association with Anulom (Anugami Lokrajya Mahabhiyan) in Swatantryaveer Sawarkar Sadan, Pune.
Pune was selected as the venue because:

1. As per the reports published on National CSR portal for the financial year 2015-16, Pune ranks second in the list of districts (of Maharashtra state) where CSR funds have been spent.

2. Home for many large corporates making the district one with a large potential for CSR spending.


3. Having one of the highest concentration of small and medium NGOs in the country that would potentially need training on CSR.

Highlights of the workshop
The workshop was attended by 150 participants against a planned strength of 110 NGOs. Organisations across Maharashtra and some parts of Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka were also in attendance for the session.
The workshop started with Sammaan highlighting some trends relating to FCRA Funding between 2014-15 to 2016-17 in the country that were published in Times of India. As per the report, Quantum of FCRA funding received by NGOs in India in the last three years are: Rs 15,299 crore in 2014-15, Rs 17,773 crore in 2015-16 and Rs 6,499 crore in 2016-17. This shows how the FCRA funds have reduced drastically in year 2016-17.
NGOs are looking at the option of CSR funding to plug in the gap left by reduction in FCRA funding to be able to carry out their social initiatives. However, there is a perceived compatibility gap and a trust deficit between what corporates want and what NGOs can offer.
This was followed by a brief introduction to Anulom by its COO, Pankaj Pathak.
Synopsis about sessions by speakers


Mr Pankaj Vallabh, CSR Head – Bajaj explained briefly on the CSR spend by Bajaj group of companies. Talking about the preferred districts of Maharashtra and Rajasthan for their CSR activities, he also mentioned about few of their projects going on in Uttarakhand. Presenting about their CSR investment during the years 2015-18, Mr Vallabh enlightened the sector wise distribution of their company funds. Their current approach for CSR spend shows maximum of spends in Health followed up with Education, Environment and Rural Development.


The group of company has been associated with over 300 partners for their various pilots, scale-up, infra and entrepreneurship projects. Explaining about their CSR process, he also mentioned about the selection process that they follow. On closing of the presentation, he highlighted one of their major CSR projects on Water Conservation and its impact on the neighbouring villages. He also explained the Grant management process followed at Bajaj. A detailed Q&A session took place immediately after his presentation where NGOs participated by raising their concerns on getting CSR funds.





Ms Bhuvaneshwari Jayaraman, Sr. Manager CSR – Volkswagen explained about their CSR initiatives and execution. The corporate has major spend in the sector of Health and Skilling. Their CSR department consists of a core team with number of Implementation partners that have been working on their projects. Ms Jayaraman shared information on their on-going projects based majorly around their plant in Pune. Their intervention areas include Health, Education, Skilling and Environment. After her presentation for the Volkswagon CSR projects, a few NGOs asked for details about the corporate’s CSR strategy and selection process. Also, there was a discussion on the contribution they had made to the Paediatric Orthopaedic Surgery department of a local hospital.




Mr Sachetan Gharat, Sr. Manager – BSE Sammaan CSR Limited explained CSR Act and Mandates in detail. Talking about Mandates that NGOs and corporate organisations both must comply with, he also shared information about Schedule VII. Speaking about the allowable thematic areas where corporates can utilize their CSR funds, he also enlightened not permissible initiatives. He spoke about general CSR Lifecycle and corporates’ approaches for their Operational strategies. While explaining about corporate due diligence, he briefly talked about legal and financial aspects the organisations look at. While closing his presentation he spoke over topics like mandatory documents that NGOs need to have for applying CSR Funding, approaches of connecting with corporate organisations. A detailed Q&A session was arranged after his presentation where many NGOs raised their concerns and understanding about CSR mandates.





Mr. Hemant Gupta, MD & CEO – BSE Sammaan CSR Limited talked about role of NGOs to be able to have sustainable CSR ecosystem and How BSE Sammaan have been empowering Corporate and NGOs to be able to effectively communicate through various strategic initiatives. Explaining about how Sammaan is helping corporates in raising RFP, project match-making and technology driven solutions. He also mentioned about the technology driven solution to corporates and NGOs. While closing of his presentation, he explained about how BSE Sammaan is evolving from being NGO listing facility to more proactive organization by reaching out to corporates for raising the projects for NGOs; Evolving as platform to more comprehensive and interactive tool with features like technology driven RFP making, matchmaking and Project Management. A brief session of Q&A was carried out immediately afterwards.


Mr Vivek Atre – A renowned expert in the field of CSR, spoke on behalf of the NGOs functioning in Pune and other regions of Maharashtra. He spoke briefly about the approach that has been adopted by NGOs to apply for CSR funds. Not only did he explain the issues that NGOs face while working on the field and applying for corporate RFPs but also talked about the laxity of NGOs in recording and presenting the facts and figures to the corporate organisations. He spoke about what corporates expect from NGOs while selection process. Mr Atre addressed many of the NGOs’ potential issues and shared his experiences of managing NGOs and projects. While closing of his part of speech, Mr Atre suggested ways of recording and presenting their work to corporates and become a potential implementation partner. He recalled an example of a renowned social worker – Mr Abhay Bang (awarded as Maharashtra Bhushan) – who had done excellent work on Rural Health. Talking about how he used to record information while working on the field, Mr Atre advised the participant NGOs to adopt a similar mechanism to have their work documented.
Closing note:
NGOs appreciated the efforts taken by BSE Sammaan and Anulom in reaching out NGOs and working on building their capacities to be able to effectively engage corporates.