By Nilima Sil
It is interesting to see the journey made by Social Responsibility in India, from being a mere cheque charity to a responsibility that is informed, analysed, and most importantly transparent & accountable. The emerging want for volunteering opportunities, increasing CSR departments in corporate and the urgent development goals, laws and regulations being instituted by governments and world institutions is reflective of the available wealth and willingness of the privileged world.
However this abundance in resources and drive for social change is omnipresent and urgently needs a connector the need and work at grassroots for a clear and direct impact. With the strong belief in Individual Social responsibility, Childreach international India has been sensitizing to bridge this positive urge and connecting it to the work at the grass roots to partake in the efforts to address the pressing needs in India.
Childreach International India is a part of the global organization working for Child Protection, Early Childhood Development, Child participation and Child rights in India with the vision “to create a world where every child reaches his/her full potential”. To drive the same to the optimum, they have also been ceaselessly driving outreach, sensitization and invite volunteers to directly get involved in the process of social development through its many programs.
Childreach International brings one of them – Futurebuild Program; an award winning, hands on experience that will see one travel to Childreach International India project sites and get involved for a life changing experience in the actual building or reconstruction of anything from a school classroom to a village water pump. This is the classic project where individuals, groups and corporate are able to leave a permanent legacy of social development.
A vital part of the Future Building Scheme is making sure that all the work carried out is done in partnership with the local community. Future building is a direct impact aiming towards sustainability of the project and hence most of the projects have been carefully selected to ensure that the project benefits more and more children over a longer period of time.
Although, expressions speak a lot but the actual experience of the Ega Partnership Group, UK in Childreach International’s Darjeeling project reflects the measurable, tangible and massive impact that 15 individuals have made to the lives of more than 300 children. The Rain water harvesting project , now complete, has brought solution to the expensive and massive water problems for the project, the environmental problems. Also included in the project was the betterment of classrooms, making them brighter, brought million dollar smiles to the children.
In another project, Carlson Group, India, joined hands with Childreach in their CSR initiative to provide for the infrastructural facilities for the destitute and street children. The future build program provided for the building of a Education centre – library, computer classes and innovative teaching-learning materials to enhance the interest – level and encourage the otherwise street-smart children into education and meaningful livelihood. Clean water facility, encouragement into good habits like sports, study, good language and money saving, and character building program has been instituted through counselling against social evils like pickpocketing, begging and violence.
This program has also proved vital to save lives in case of any natural disaster, calamities and even man-induced war situations. Childreach International India has been able to bring about stability in Leh, Ladhak after the devastation in 2010. The project has addressed the environmental and project sustainability through installation of Solar water facility and heating facility to the school touching more than 1000 children in Leh, where the temperature can reach up to -40 degress in the peak of winters.
A vital part of the project is making sure that all the work carried out is done so in partnership with the local community – a process central to the Childreach International mission. Speaking about the same, Naresh Chaudhary, Country Director, Childreach International India, said, “Futurebuilding is a direct impact aiming towards sustainability of the project and therefore most of the projects have been carefully selected to ensure that the projects benefit more and more children and community for a long period of time. I believe, we are able to mark it properly, so as to make many lives better and happy”.
Childreach International India is a grass roots charity working in genuine partnership with local communities across India, improving children’s access to healthcare, education, child rights and protection. Childreach International India encourages children, families and communities to take responsibility of projects, becoming stakeholders able to provide sustainable solutions to the issues which matter to them, giving them the chance to shape their own futures. Childreach International India believes in creating a world where every child has the opportunity to unlock their full potential in life.
(Nilima Sil is Manager – Resources in Childreach International India based in New Delhi. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)