Bosconet and DBDS (Don Bosco Development Society) collaborated to organize a one-day workshop on September 14, 2023, at the Provincial House in Matunga, Mumbai. The workshop, entitled "Corporate Social Responsibility: Compliances, Strategies, and Fundraising," was attended bymore than25participants, including representatives from Don Bosco and its partner organizations across Maharashtra. Fr. George Miranda, Executive Director of DBSR Mumbai, extended a warm welcome and expressed gratitude to Fr. Santhanam U (National Director, Bosconet) for their collaboration in organizing this event. He also acknowledged the support and participation of Fr. Savio Silveira (Provincial) and Fr. Gregory D’Almeida (Director, DBDS). The workshop was facilitated by Mr. Nikhil Pant and Mr. Mudit Pant from Lakshyaa.
CSR Compliances,Strategies and Fundraising:
The workshop commenced with four informative sessions. In the first and second sessions, Mr. Nihil Pant discussed the legal and regulatory aspects of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), covering CSR laws, reporting requirements, and providing case studies illustrating the consequences of non-compliance. He intriguingly referred to CSR as 'Calm Self Realization' and stated the historical evolution of CSR in India, spanning back to the liberalization era of the 1980s and 1990s. The discussions then centered around a comprehensive exploration of Section 135 (Schedule 7) of the Companies Bill, 2012, which is composed of 9 clauses. This eventually led to an in-depth analysis of the Act of 2013. Mr. Mudit from Lakshyaa also presented an overview of region-wise CSR funds available in India. In the third and fourth sessions, Mr. Pant facilitated discussions on the formulation of robust CSR strategies. Participants gained insights into aligning CSR initiatives with business objectives, engaging stakeholders effectively, leveraging the current market and funding opportunities, staying up-to-date with CSR fund accessibility trends, and adopting best practices in project selection and execution. Mr. Pant used the ONGC project case study in Kashmir (Jammu and Kashmir) to explain various aspects of CSR, including need assessment, implementation strategies, risk management, transparent communication, stakeholder engagement, reporting, auditing, and impact assessment.
Throughout the day, participants actively engaged in Q&A sessions and interactive discussions with the resource persons. Mr. Pant also mentioned plans to conduct an online session in October 2023, focusing on frequently asked questions related to CSR Rules.
The Way Forward:
The "Corporate Social Responsibility: Compliances, Strategies, and Fundraising" workshop emerged as a resounding success. It underscored the importance of a change in mindset and investing in human resources for those looking to tap into the CSR market in India. Participants departed with a deeper understanding of CSR compliances and effective strategies. In conclusion, all participants expressed their eagerness to apply the knowledge gained to monitor and execute projects, receive additional reporting guidelines, explore techniques and approaches for securing CSR funds, comply with best practices in building effective CSR strategies, and engage in fundraising. They also expressed a desire to stay updated on various CSR initiatives. Don Bosco Network is aligning its goals and priorities with the Sustainable Development Goals and CSR Compliances as it shapes ahead on its path of progress.
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