Telangana is the youngest state in India, formed in the year 2014. It’s a hotspot for tourists since its hospitality and multicultural society are world-famous. Hyderabad, the capital city of this state is the fifth largest city in India and home to some of India’s best educational institutions, public sector and software companies, defence companies, and the delicious Hyderabadi Biryani, of course! The Government of Telangana has launched the ‘T-Social Impact Group’ to bring more convergence between the corporates doing CSR and various departments in the State Government. The programme is reaping rewards since investment on CSR in Telangana is on the rise. We present the best practices in corporate social responsibility in the state.
TCS Adult Literacy Programme
TCS launched a revolutionary, cost-effective learning programme for adults in the year 2000, enabling functional literacy. Over 46,221 adults in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh have been positively impacted.
The Adult Literacy Programme (ALP) is one of the most successful initiatives for CSR in Telangana. It runs on TCS’ proprietary Computer-based Functional Literacy (CBFL) solution, which enables adult learners to read, write, and perform basic arithmetic within 50-55 learning hours. It is intended for native speakers of a language and works with phonetic languages. Its prime focus is on words rather than alphabets, thus enabling students to acquire a 700-word vocabulary within a short while. This programme is available in 9 Indian languages (Telugu, Tamil, Hindi, Marathi, Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Oriya and Urdu). It uses a combination of teaching methods such as software, multimedia presentations and printed materials.
TCS collaborates with agencies such as the National Literacy Mission Authority (NLMA), NGOs, and Corporate Connects to implement this programme. It is currently being deployed in coordination with the State Literacy Mission Authorities and NGOs aiming to help NLMA’s Saakshar Bharat literacy target of educating 7 crore citizens. Tata Consultancy Services has won several awards for this CSR solution including the Project of the Year award in the Contribution to Community category at the prestigious Project Management National Conference 2018.
ADP MIDAS (Making an Impactful Difference at Schools)
ADP Private Limited is a fully-owned subsidiary of ADP LLC (ADP). The company is engaged in providing Information Technology and Information Technology Enabled Services to ADP’s business divisions worldwide. They commenced the MIDAS CSR project in 2008-09 in Telangana by initially adopting 5 Government Primary Schools in Hyderabad. Since then, the project has continuously evolved and now impacts 20,000 children including 150 visually impaired children and over 200 autistic children annually, making it a top programme for CSR in Telangana.
MIDAS focuses on improving learning levels and employable skills in children from early childhood till post-graduation. This programme also focuses on inclusive development through the setting up of local community libraries, science labs, and learning centres. They also have healthcare support in school. In terms of infrastructure development, the project sets up smart and digital classrooms, computer lab, digital tabs based learning and assessments, thematic paintings and complete whitewash of school, separate toilets for girls and boys, and RO water purification units. The whole infrastructural transformation built a strong, vibrant and positive atmosphere in the school, resulting in much more enrollments, attendance, performance and retention.
The MIDAS programme was featured among the ‘Best CSR Trends of the Year’ in NASSCOM’s 2016 Annual Report. ADP has been recognized twice by the HYSEA as the ‘Best Company’ for ‘Educational Initiatives’ in 2015 and 2018 for its MIDAS project and its significant impact on the community. The children studying at MIDAS schools frequently visit the ADP office and participate in the company’s Annual Day and Family Day programmes, thus gaining more exposure and self-confidence. The programme has been consistently scaling up and is completely replicable and sustainable.
Capgemini LEAP and LEAP Inclusion
In partnership with various stakeholders who have the expertise and local presence in the communities, the CSR wing of multinational corporation Capgemini facilitates the creation of sustainable livelihoods for youth through their project LEAP (Livelihood Education through Action against Poverty). With a wide array of short duration courses of 16 weeks, the project works with school and college dropouts equipping them with employable skills and providing job opportunities.
The 4-week On-The-Job-Training gives exposure of industrial functions to candidates. The CSR team is closely working with employing entities for greater connection on job requirement through E-content and curriculum development. This enables them to enhance the current suite of training offerings to match the growing trend and future of skill requirements by recruiters.
Extensive engagement with sector experts and a strong alumni network create great support for upcoming batches. To encourage the participation of Youth with Disabilities, LEAP Inclusion focuses on the inclusivity aspect and provides training equipped to handle disabilities. Skillsets are provided which equip them to compete in the marketplace with greater opportunities of earning higher incomes. This has positively impacted more than 6500 youths who are bringing their families out of poverty and leading towards greater societal transformation.
‘Prayas – A Pursuit to Education’ from government-owned NMDC is aimed at the emancipation of the backward communities residing around the company’s plants through education. Prayas is nearly two decades old, from modest beginnings it has acquired the shape of a gamechanger for local communities.
NMDC is working with NGO partners like Shamayita Math along with other specialized agencies like M/s DAV institutions for implementing different initiatives under PRAYAS. The roles of the partners vary from segment to segment. At the grassroots level, the NGO supplements the effort of the State government staff, whereas in the middle segment NMDC takes on the role of financier as well as that of an implementer. At the higher educational level, service providers and the State Authorities play the role of implementing partners and NMDC dons the role of the funding agency.
Since education is the touchstone for eventual emancipation, a significant portion of NMDC CSR efforts and funds are invested in this focus area. Another reason for choosing this thematic area is that the local region is inhabited primarily by tribal communities who have historically had minimal access to educational facilities and NMDC’s efforts have acted as a catalyst for bringing socio-economic change. In the process, education has triggered aspirations for a better life and a peaceful and prosperous future amongst the local youth. Prayas is a model for CSR in Telangana. In fact, some aspects of the initiative have been replicated across project locations in other States.