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Last Date of Registration : 18 July 2012
INDIACSR News Network
NEW DELHI: The Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) of Jindal Steel and Power Limited (JSPL) has been recognized at the national level. The presentation on CSR activities of JSPL ‘Asha-The Hope’ was commented as Exemplary, and was selected among best three cases which were screened in the CSR case study competition organized by the All India Management Association, New Delhi.
The presentation was screened on July 6 and 7 at the fifth business responsibility summit, by R K Singh, Head of Department CSR, JSPL at Hotel Mourya Serraton, New Delhi in which industry representatives across the nation and also from foreign nations had participated.
JSPL has always placed it Social Responsibility beyond its business objectives. Through persistent professional endeavors CSR JSPL has strived to bring tangible improvement in the lives of people in the communities especially those living in the edge.
While CSR JSPL has focused at large on holistic community development through its positive interventions in the areas of education, health, livelihood, drinking water and sanitation, sports-art and culture, infrastructure, it has also strived to empower and enable the marginalized communities creating an inclusive and right based model for them.
Persons with disabilities being one of the larger such community, has always remained in the centre focus of all development initiatives taken up by CSR JSPL.
During initial phases persons with disabilities were provided assistance to pursue education or health care, and were supported with assistive and adaptive devices such as tricycle, wheel chair, crutches, hearing aids, calipers etc. through different camps. Over the years, this was studied that giving one time services to the disabled or differently abled is not enough and there is need of a total life cycle approach which involves programs of prevention, identification, early intervention, education, vocational training livelihood to enable them lead independent living.
This was felt that there is great need of empowering and mainstreaming persons with disabilities through holistic and sustainable approaches, to such an extent that, they will no more remain liability to the society; rather they will add productivity to the mainstreaming work force, and with an initiative to meet these objectives an institution was established in the name of ASHA-THE HOPE, O P Jindal Vocational & Rehabilitation Centre, on 7 th August 2009 at Patrapali, Raigarh, to provide comprehensive state of art rehabilitation services in terms of early intervention, Physiotherapy, Occupational therapy, Special education, Speech therapy and audiometry, Music and Recreational Therapy, Counseling-guidance services, skill development training etc. enabling them lead an independent life.
From our past experience, we could realize that prevention of disability or its consequences through appropriate interventions at an early age is much more result giving, then doing something at an adult age, when disability has already complicated the physical, psycho-social, and economic aspects of life, and therefore children with disability were given focus in our innovative program Asha-The Hope.
This CSR initiative towards rehabilitation and empowerment of persons with disabilities were carried out through three major approches, viz., Full Life Cycle Approaches (FLCA), Holistic Development Approaches (HDA) and Access to enabling and empowering environment approaches (A2E). FLCA covers programs of prevention, identification, early intervention, education, vocational training, livelihood and independent living services which are age specific, while holistic development approaches included all therapeutic interventions such as physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, audiological services, psychological therapy, family support etc.
Organization also works on creating enabling and empowering environment by building capacities in the community towards barrier free environment, community mobilization and self-help group formation and activation. The centre is catering the needs of various categories of persons with disabilities as per the classification of the Persons with Disabilities (Equal opportunity, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 and the National Trust for the Welfare of the persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities Act 1999, irrespective of caste, creed, sex, socio-economic variances .
The centre not only provides them therapeutic or educational rehabilitation services but also takes effective measures to engage them in sustainable livelihood programs. The livelihood promotion unit provides training to the differently abled in selected trades like Screen Printing, Candle Making, Tailoring, Soft toy making, Computer and DTP etc. which a differently abled person can practice at home and earn his living.
After training the trainee is allowed to go back to his/her own community and a set of moulds/raw materials, for the particular trade in which he/she becomes the master trainer for the SHG of differently abled persons in that community which is already formed and strengthened through our extension and outreach programs. Besides therapeutic interventions and livelihood programs the differently abled were supported getting disability certificate, pension, bus pass, loans through Microfinance Schemes and other entitlements and benefits.
Mr. Debadutta Mishra, who is working as Jr. Manager at CSR JSPL and is now looking after the project Asha-The Hope, explains the achievement as highly encouraging for him and his team to march ahead, to develop Asha-The Hope as a model in the country in bringing inclusion, equal opportunities and full participation for persons with disabilities. According to Mr. Mishra, empowering the persons with disability has been the most neglected subject in the social development sector.
Not many organizations have taken up the holistic approach of providing services to the persons with disabilities, because of diversities and complexities involved in it, starting from early intervention through education, vocational training and livelihood programs to independent living. Similarly hardly there is any organization in the country worth the name that can cater to any type of disability.
As a result, often the persons with disabilities have to go from one center to another. For example, a person with hearing impairment, landed in a rehabilitation center catering to the visual impairment, has to struggle to be told that it is not the proper place for him and he has to go to a center dealing with visual impairment. Such a person with hearing impairment will also not be able to get the right information as to what is this organization and where is it. She and/or her parents have to make lot of efforts to reach to a center of their requirement, which involve substantial expenditure and consume considerable time.
Development is ultimately about making people have control over their own lives. Charity is about people remaining as victims controlled by others. Disability is an issue that touches all major issues of CSR of any leading company of any country. If you work on disability, you have to work on education, you have to work on health, and you have to work on livelihood and so on. Corporate Social Responsibilities being the strongest instrument today in bringing desired change and transformation in development arena, should come up to include disability issues into their mainstream CSR agenda.