Empowering local communities since 1994 through building more self-reliance
India CSR News Network
MUMBAI: Dabur India Ltd, India’s most trusted healthcare company, has embarked on a mission to improve the health and hygiene standards in rural India. Towards this end, the Company has targeted to construct 1,200 rural household toilets in 26 villages of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Himachal Prasesh by the end of 2016-17 financial year. Dabur plans to ensure that 5 villages in India will achieve ‘Open Defecation Free’ status within this year, with every single household and schools in these villages being equipped with toilets.
Crossing the first big milestone in this direction, Dabur has helped 2 villages – one each in Baddi (Himachal Pradesh) and Ghaziabad (Uttar Pradesh) — achieve Open Defecation Free status this month. In addition, 12 new toilet blocks have been constructed in two schools in Rudrapur and the newly constructed toilet blocks were handed over to the school authorities this week, benefiting 1,101 students, including 450 girls. The schools covered under this initiative were: Government Primary School Kheda & BRC, Rudrapur in District Udham Singh Nagar.
“This women-centric initiative is part of Dabur’s ‘700 se 7 kadam’ campaign, under which Dabur India seeks to protect the dignity of women in rural India by giving them easy access to toilets. During 2015-16, Dabur has constructed 1,048 household toilets in rural areas and has set the target to construct an additional 1,200 household toilets this year. Dabur believes that an organization’s true worth lies beyond its business. Therefore, various CSR activities are planned and implemented around its operational areas through its CSR arm SUNDESH,” said Dabur India Ltd CSR Implementation Head Sushil Kumar.
Inspired by the words of its founder Dr S K Burman who said, “What is that life worth which cannot bring comfort to others“, Dabur is as much about Ayurveda as it is about people, as much about trust as it is about collective growth. Dabur has created a cooperative system with the local communities around its operational areas for sustaining their livelihood through Skill Development, Sanitation & Healthcare initiatives, besides focusing on Women Empowerment, Education and Financial Inclusion. It thrives to operate in a manner that not just continues to generate an attractive return for shareholders, but also minimize the impact on the environment and helps in replenishing the planet; while lending a helping hand to the community.
“We also assist local communities in the maintenance of green zone across its operational areas. SUNDESH undertakes mass plantation drives where farmers are encouraged towards plantation of Poplar trees by providing financial support on a 50-50 basis. As a result, farmers get Rs 2,500 per tree in 5 years from an investment of Rs 11. Dabur also regularly hosts training programmes in Rudrapur where villagers are trained on agricultural best practices,” Kumar said.
Dabur believes in community-oriented healthcare and works towards empowering every individual with essential knowledge and skills, which would enable them to lead a healthy life.
Dabur has established vocational training centres for the youth and women across Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh, where they are encouraged to take up income-generation programmes or start their own small enterprises. Dabur also runs Gender Equality programmes and today runs 16 Nari Shakti Kendras that offer a range of vocational training and skill development classes for women. In 2015-16, around 569 women were trained at these centres.
Through SUNDESH, Dabur today runs 9 Non-Formal Education centres & Adult Literacy Centres, which provide education to underprivileged kids between 6 -14 years of age and women in the 15–35 age group. A total of 375 children gained basic education at these centres in 2015-16, while 419 women were made literate.
Dabur has also established 375 Self-Help Groups & Joint Liability Groups to provide financial inclusion in the rural commnuities. The company provide financial loans to the beneficiaries for productive purposes such as setting up dairy units, grocery shops, mobile repair units, medical stores, poultry units, dhabas, shoes-making units, adhesive units, bangle shops and other small outlets. What proves the success of the initiative is that the repayment of the bank loans is almost 100%.
“The objective behind our Social Business Projects is to ensure integrated development comprising of all aspects of human development.Dabur have been involved with community development work since 1994, endeavoring to bring about an enduring change to the lives of people and to create the right environment for driving the local economy,” Kumar added.