Goonj, Neurosynaptic Communication & Udyogini Announced as Finalists of the India Social Entrepreneur Award


INDIACSR News Network

NEW DELHI: Following a rigorous due diligence process, Jubilant Bhartia Foundation and Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship today announced the finalists of the India Social Entrepreneur of the Year (SEOY) Award 2012. These include Goonj (founded by Anshu Gupta), Neurosynaptic Communications Pvt Ltd (NCPL) (founded by Sameer Sawarkar and Rajeev Kumar) and Udyogini (led by Vanita Vishwanath). The winner(s) will be chosen by distinguished jury, and announced at an awards ceremony on November 6, 2012, in New Delhi. The ceremony will coincide with the World Economic Forum on India.

The SEOY Awards identifies and celebrates visionary social enterprises that demonstrate transformative models.  These organisations are scaling or replicating their ideas across India and in other countries. All three finalists are actively shaping value chains and ecosystems to enable last-mile access to primary healthcare via technology (i.e NCPL), markets via entrepreneurship (i.e. Udyogini), and material resources through community participation (i.e. Goonj).

Congratulating the finalists, Shyam S Bhartia, Chairman & Managing Director and Hari S Bhartia, Co Chairman & Managing Director Jubilant Life Sciences and Founder Directors of Jubilant Bhartia Foundation, said, “Organisations like Goonj, NCPL and Udyogini are demonstrating the possibilities of creating significant change, by optimising the limited resources and managing infrastructural challenges of remote districts of India. Jubilant Bhartia Foundation looks forward to collaborating and supporting them with linkages and networks to increase their impact and scale.”

According to Hilde Schwab, Co-founder & Chairperson, Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, “India continues to be one of our strongest countries in putting forth a large number of high-quality social enterprises.  This is the first year in which all finalists have impact or activities concentrated in remote regions where the need for healthcare, skills development and infrastructure remains acute.”

The finalists of this year’s awards were identified through an intensive outreach process.  Applications to the India SEOY Awards 2012 opened in April this year. Of the record 182 applications received, 25 social entrepreneurs moved onto the second round of the evaluation, from which five applicants were further selected for due diligence visits. After the on-site visits, background research, reference checks and multiple rounds of deliberation, three were shortlisted for finals.

Descriptions of the Finalists

Anshu Gupta, Goonj
New Delhi
Goonj channels excess resources in urban households to impoverished rural and disaster-prone areas. Materials include clothes, furniture, electronic equipment, and medical supplies. Sourcing its material at collection camps in urban neighbourhoods and corporate offices, Goonj delivers 1000 tons of material every year through an extensive network of 300 volunteers and 250 partners across 21 states of India.

Sameer Sawarkar and Rajeev Kumar, Neurosynaptic Communications Pvt Ltd (NCPL)
NCPL is a technology provider for remote medical diagnostics and telemedicine.  The company works with implementation partners bringing healthcare to areas with no clinic or hospital access. NCPL configures its ReMeDi™ platform to enable patient data transmission and high quality remote consultations from doctors located in the cities. In the last year alone, ReMeDi™ has enabled 100,000 paid medical consultations, in which 75% of the patients did not have to travel beyond their village for healthcare access.  Villagers experience an average cost savings of USD $6 per visit.

Vanita Vishwanath, Udyogini
New Delhi
Udyogini provides business training to marginalised communities, focusing on women, in some of the most backward parts of the country.  Leveraging on existing value chains often related to agriculture and natural resources, Udyogini builds capacity for local resource management, and facilitates market linkages so that rural communities retain more of the value generated by their goods and services.  To date, 15,000 rural producers have been trained, and 85 micro-enterprises have been launched.  Udyogini customers report a 50-120% increase in family incomes.

The Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, founded in 1998, is a not-for-profit and a sister organization of the World Economic Forum.  With the purpose of advancing social entrepreneurship as an important catalyst for societal progress, the foundation is under the legal supervision of the Swiss Federal Government and is headquartered in Geneva/Cologny, Switzerland.

Jubilant Bhartia Foundation(JBF), the social wing of the Jubilant Bhartia Group, was established in 2007 as a not-for-profit organization. JBF focuses on conceptualizing and implementing the Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives for the group.

Start Up! is a Delhi-based social enterprise which manages the outreach, due diligence and jury presentation of the SEOY India awards on behalf of the Jubilant Bhartia Foundation.

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