Surat is a city known for its impact on the natural diamond industry through the artisans who cut and polish these rare and unique gems. India’s major diamond companies based there have deeply rooted family values that extend to the villages surrounding their businesses. Once known for silk weaving, this city in Gujarat has a flourishing silk market and is a commercial centre for textiles exported to all corners of the world.
CSR in Surat has evolved from earthquake relief aeons ago into upgraded hospitals and upskilling. In FY2020-21, the district of Surat was the recipient of Rs. 70.19 Cr. of CSR funds from 157 companies. The top sectors for CSR programs were Education, Health, and Rural Development, with an investment of Rs. 29.74 Cr., Rs. 26.33 Cr., and Rs. 9.21 Cr., respectively, in each of the sectors. The top three spenders in the district in the last financial year were Shell Energy India Private Limited (Rs. 6.84 Cr.), Kiran Gems Private Limited (Rs. 6.5 Cr.), and Shree Ramkrishna Exports Private Limited (Rs. 4.7 Cr.).
Here are the most successful initiatives for CSR in Surat.
Essar Steel Hemophilia Day Care Centre
Like diabetes, there is no cure for hemophilia but it can be subdued, and major complications can be avoided through regular care. Early detection and treatment is important for people suffering from this condition. The city of Surat is estimated to have at least 600 hemophiliacs, but only around 400 of them are registered. Essar Foundation and Essar Steel Hazira supported the New Civil Hospital in Surat in setting up Gujarat’s first Hemophilia Day Care Centre back in 2015.
The Hemophilia Day Care Centre in Surat addresses the needs of over 600 patients a day. These patients are treated free of cost at the integrated treatment facility, which includes investigation or diagnosis laboratories, counselling for patients and family, physiotherapy and a five-bed day care ward.
Saint Gobain – Covid-19 hospital
At a time when labour shortage is hurting the construction sector, causing cost escalation and delays in the completion of projects, Saint Gobain India Pvt Ltd – Gyproc marked a new record by erecting a 600-bed Covid-19 hospital in Surat in just 17 days. As part of its CSR, the glass company created 52,000 sq ft of walled partitions across eight floors of the existing structure to convert it into a Covid-19 hospital by using specialised gypsum plasterboard-based drywall technology. The gypsum plasterboard drywall made from natural gypsum rocks are easy to install with reduced workforce, which turned things in favour of Saint Gobain.
Government-owned GIPCL (Gujarat Industries Power Company Limited) promoted the Trust DEEP (Development Efforts For Rural Economy And People) exclusively to undertake its CSR activities. DEEP works towards holistic development of the communities surrounding the company through integrated social development approach. DEEP operates in 5 villages of Mandvi taluka and 18 villages of Mangrol Taluka, both in Surat District. DEEP works in close coordination with the local community in areas including Health, Education, Village Infrastructure Development, Livelihood, Environment Improvement. GIPCL CSR in Surat has adopted ITIs (industrial training institutes) in the remote tribal belts of Jhankhvav in the district. The CSR initiative consists of putting in continuous effort for upgradation of these ITIs in into Centres of Excellence (CoE) under the Public Private Partnership mode.
HK Group Empower 100
Through their Empower 100 Initiative, HK Designs commits to hire and train at least 100 women every year across all age brackets starting from 18 years. HK Group is a key player in the diamond industry. Specialized training is given to women for developing the skills of jewelry manufacturing, being compensated while undergoing this training. After the training is complete, they can either join HK Group as a full-time employee or are free to opt for job opportunities in other companies.
Further, as part of Empower 100 CSR initiative, H.K. Group has pledged to reinvest a portion of their company’s profit toward ongoing training for women, enabling fair wages, boosting self-esteem, independence and community among women.
Dharmanandan Diamonds – stem cell research
Dharmanandan Diamonds is dedicated to the thousands of these skilled workers they employ providing livelihood for their families. The diamond makers, along with Hari Krishna Exports, has committed part of their CSR in Surat to stem cell research. Both companies, located in Surat, encouraged their employees to donate stem cells to further medical research in the area. Over 9,000 artisans and staff have since donated stems cells, helping critically ill patients in Surat receive necessary treatments for a second chance at life.