HYDERABAD: On World Aids Day, Accor presented the key findings of the first Accor Community Investment (CI) Scorecard for the Mallika Sewing Project by NGO Nireekshana in India. In keeping with its position as one of the key thought leaders in the global hospitality industry, Accor engaged CSR Asia in early 2011 to assist with the evaluation of its community investment initiatives, by applying CSR Asia’s Community Investment (CI) Scorecard framework to the Mallika Sewing Project in India.
Accor India has been supporting Nireekshana, HIV/AIDS focused NGO based in Hyderabad since 2007. This partnership was strengthened in 2009 through the Mallika Sewing Project, where women affected by HIV/AIDs are provided with an income-generating skill in traditional crafts. Accor lends its extensive business network to help promote and sell the products made through the Mallika Sewing Project, thereby contributing to the sustainability of the program, where profits generated from the sale of products part-fund the project.
Speaking on this programme, Ashwin Shirali, Director, Human Resources, Accor India says, “Today in the Asia Pacific, Accor has taken the industry lead with integrated social and environmental programs, in all of the countries with which it operates. In India, Accor is combating epidemic by providing means of self support to families affected by AIDS.
According to UNICEF, India is home to the world’s third largest group of people suffering from HIV/AIDS estimated 2.1 million, many of whom are poor and have little or no access to health. We are committed to fighting the disease through strategic employee-awareness initiatives and results-oriented actions.”
He further adds, “Corporate Social Responsibility requires more holistic strategic thinking and a wider stakeholder perspective. Therefore, Accor undertook the Scorecard Program which is well positioned to support a knowledge-building effort to give our values and visions a reality.
We are confident that the Scorecard findings will work as a means to articulate our strategy, communicate its details to employees, motivate people to come forward to lend support, enable us to monitor results effectively and clearly define critical objectives going forward.”
Different stakeholder groups – women involved in the project, the project manager, and employee volunteers were interviewed to know the developments and understand the improvements that can be made on current systems. The findings divulge that there has been an overall positive impact on the community wherein women have been able to acquire income generating skills and achieved self support.
1. Around 65% of the women trained in Mallika Sewing Project are generating substantial income to support their families and are developing a very positive outlook to the future
2. 100% of women involved reported feeling more confident and having a higher sense of self-esteem
3. None of the women had a job prior to joining the Mallika Sewing Project. 13 women surveyed who had completed the training had an average annual income of $55,000.
For the employees there has been an increase in staff awareness of the communities surrounding Accor’s properties, raised staff motivation and sense of connection to the local community
1. The employees were generally positive about the Mallika Sewing Project, with all of those surveyed indicating that the initiative has achieved the objective of providing an opportunity for employees to contribute to their local communities
2. Through their interaction with the women involved in the project, the employees have gained a greater awareness of the effect of AIDS on people, the difference between AIDS and HIV, how HIV is transmitted, and the importance of nutrition for AIDS patients
Sharing the key findings of the Scorecard program, Madhupal TV, Director, Human Resources at Hyderabad International Convention Centre says, “Employees of Novotel Hyderabad Convention Centre and Novotel Hyderabad Airport have, since 2006, been actively engaged in supporting Nireekshana. To date, the project has made good progress but improvements can be made on current systems, and measurements (inputs, outputs and impact) can be streamlined so that the organisation may understand the impact of its community investment initiatives better.”
“Different Accor offices worldwide are working with HIV/AIDS affected communities as a part of their community investment initiatives. One of the measurements identified through this program will include an exchange of information between offices to help each other in terms of project design and approach. Shared knowledge between offices as well as from experts working with this particular target group would benefit different Accor offices with HIV/AIDS community investment initiatives.” He adds.