Equipped NGOs key to success of CSR spending

Two days National Consultation on Action for Sustainable Growth 2015

New Delhi : December 11, 2015: Smile Foundation, a national level development organization, had organized a two day workshop called EMPOWERING GRASSROOTS in New Delhi. Dr. Bhaskar Chatterjee, Director General and CEO of the Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs (under the aegis of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs), inaugurated the seminar and conducted the training program in the first session. Experts and trainers from organisations like KPMG; Ericsson also conducted and mentored other sessions.

Twenty Four grass root NGOs from nine states – i.e. Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telengana, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh participated in the workshop. The focus of the workshop was to orient grassroots NGOs with various Fund Raising Skills and getting well-versed with CSR Act and bridge the gap between the prospect of Rs. 16,000 crore CSR budget in the India Inc. The workshop also assisted them in building capacities at various project management techniques thus leading to sustainable growth of their organization.

Through this effective two-days National Consultation, the NGOs received a firsthand training by the industry experts in areas such as – CSR Act – how to raise and manage CSR funds, Proposal writing, Project Management, Good governance etc. The goal of Empowering Grassroots is to build stronger, well-skilled NGOs that can carry out their duties well, by and large raise their own funds, increase self-reliance, strengthen position as representatives of the target groups, and improve effectiveness in approaching local bodies., enable small, genuine NGOs to bring excellence in their efforts.

Speaking on the role and governance of NGO’s in India in getting benefited from the CSR ACT, Dr. Bhaskar Chatterjee, Director General and CEO of the Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs, emphasised that “it demands a high degree professionalism of NGOs if not corporatisation to access the available CSR Fund. Out of 3.3 million NGO’s in India, two-third of them may not be able to attract the funding unless they are developed, equipped and elevate themselves. Organisations such as Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs and Smile Foundation have a greater role to play in equipping these grassroots NGOs at a larger scale.” However, speakers from KPMG emphasized on the good governance process that NGOs should have in place. So topics like FCRA, Taxation and auditing were discussed followed by a Q & A.

Speaking on this occasion, – Mr. Santanu Mishra, Co- Founder & Executive Trustee, Smile Foundation said, “As an organization Smile Foundation has always aimed to identify, handhold and build capacities of genuine grassroots NGOs to achieve accountability, sustainability, scalability and leadership. Empowering grassroots is an extension of this effort in order to maximize reach and optimize returns by approaching and strengthening a large number of like-minded individuals and organizations globally.”

Empowering Grassroots is a national level programme of Smile Foundation focused on enabling genuine grassroots NGOs across India to bring excellence, good governance and sustainable growth. The idea behind the initiative is that if underprivileged communities are to be truly empowered, the important role grassroots community groups play in building and maintaining stronger communities, needs to be strengthened. Smile Foundation has so far built capacities of 500 grassroots NGOs under Empowering Grassroots programme in last two years. During the year, 500 more grassroots NGOs are projected to be covered under the programme. The aim is to bring 5000 similar NGOs under the programme across India.

About Smile Foundation:

Smile Foundation is a national level development organization benefitting over 300,000 underprivileged children, their families and the community directly through 158 welfare projects on subjects such as education, healthcare, livelihood, and women empowerment across 25 states of India. Adopting a life cycle approach of development, Smile Foundation focuses its interventions on children, their families and the community.