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HCLFoundation’s ‘Partnering For Change’ Gala: A Symphony Of Impact Across India

Empowering communities and transforming lives through collaboration


HCLFoundation commemorated the 7th edition of its transformative gathering, dubbed ‘Partnering For Change,’ or the Annual Partners Meet. The alliance forged by HCLFoundation burgeons consistently year after year. Originating with a modest 30 partners in 2016 across 4 districts, the network now boasts over 200 partners spread across 20 States in India. These collaborators, primarily non-governmental organizations (NGOs), reap the rewards of corporate social responsibility (CSR) engagement.

The recent edition welcomed over 500 attendees, including representatives from partner organizations intricately linked with HCLFoundation’s endeavours. Dr Nidhi Pundhir, Vice President, Global CSR, HCLTech & Director, HCLFoundation, emphasized the pivotal role of these alliances, underscoring the necessity to collaborate directly with partners rather than merely through them. She highlighted the foundation’s commitment to ongoing engagement, facilitated by a dedicated cadre of seasoned professionals hailing from the realms of development and humanitarianism. Additionally, she noted the close collaboration between the organisation’s governance and communications teams with the NGOs.

Partnership Impact

The latest partnership conclave saw partners from 18 States and one Union Territory (UT). They are Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Haryana, Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Mizoram, Delhi, Orissa, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, and Ladakh. “We are working on 200 + projects in these States through various NGO partners”, stated Dr Pundhir.

Illustrating the tangible impact of these collaborations, Dr. Pundhir recounted the inspiring journey of Jerlin Anika, a Deaflympian, and a recipient of the prestigious Arjuna Award conferred by the Honourable President of India, Draupadi Murmu. Additionally, she lauded the organization’s recognition with the National Water Award for its outstanding efforts in conserving and revitalizing local water bodies, safeguarding a staggering 57.9 billion litres of water nationwide.

HCL Uday & HCL Samuday

The organization has witnessed a substantial expansion in its outreach, now extending its services to 5.5 million individuals across various states. With a core focus on uplifting the ultra-poor, the Foundation channels its efforts towards two distinct arenas.

In urban landscapes, it endeavours to bridge the gap in mainstream health and education provisions for those dwelling in makeshift housing and migrant communities, spearheaded by the ‘Uday’ initiative. This endeavour operates seamlessly in all cities where HCLTech maintains a presence.

Concurrently, in rural enclaves, HCLFoundation extends a helping hand to the ultra-poor through the HCLTech Grant and its ‘Samuday’ program, championing holistic development initiatives tailored to the unique needs of rural communities.

Environmental Stewardship

HCLFoundation has made substantial investments in environmental initiatives, ranging from the preservation of local water bodies to the establishment of Agri-forests within urban settings. Additionally, the foundation has undertaken the rehabilitation of 70-80 native species in previously barren landscapes, alongside extensive waste recycling efforts. Furthermore, it extends clean technology solutions to rural areas, championing sustainable practices for a greener tomorrow.

“HCLFoundation represented its work at COP28 in Dubai and also at the United Nations Water Conference, providing them the techniques we are adopting at the ground level for conserving water”, stated Dr Pundhir.

Focal Point of the 7th Edition & Key Messages

The primary aim of this partner’s gathering is to forge connections with NGO leaders, catalyzing the nation’s developmental trajectory and paving the way forward. The foundation’s efforts span a diverse array of domains including skill development, livelihood enhancement, education, healthcare, environmental conservation, early childhood education, and disaster response. Notably, the foundation has actively intervened during crises such as the Miachong cyclone and the recent cold wave in Delhi, underscoring its commitment to swift and effective disaster relief.

Highlighting the key messages Dr Pundhir asserted, “With the partners our strength becomes fourfold, and we can respond promptly to any emergency. Our events provide a great platform for diversity. We are working with tribals, and a lot of leaders are present here. From Sikkim, the person working on the Lepcha language is also attending this meeting. We are also trying to incorporate the transgender community into the mainstream, providing them with job opportunities and connecting them to conscious employers.”

Bringing to light some of the prominent features of the 2024 Meet, Dr Pundhir said, “We have launched the ‘Sports for Change’ programme where we aim to scale up, especially concerning Paras’ sports.’

Dr Pundhir also highlighted some other initiatives in the space of skill development. “Our initiative ‘My e-haat’ is for connecting artisans directly to local and global customers through an e-commerce platform. We also have HCLFoundation Academy through which we are organising courses for professionals for their capacity building. We have courses on corporate social responsibility, adolescent health etc.”, she said.

Challenges in Partnership

The partner’s gathering serves as a forum for NGOs to engage in networking with kindred organizations and individuals. Despite the Foundation’s endeavour to extend its reach across the entire nation, it encounters specific challenges along the way.

“One of the biggest challenges is that of language barrier. We work at the grassroots level where people use the local language and not Hindi or English. We want to maintain this diversity. So, I wouldn’t call it a challenge, but the beauty of the exercise”.

Another challenge Dr Pundhir pointed out was the lack of a common governance framework and said, “CSR has to be implemented to be measurable.”

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