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Beyond just charity


“Give a fish to a man and you feed him for the day. Teach him how to fish and you feed him for life”

Charity is the easiest (and therefore, most common) way to contribute to the community. However, it is not a self sustaining model since funds can not flow in forever.

Therefore, we need to focus on solutions that help the less privileged become self reliant. Fortunately there have been many positive developments in the field of community contribution recently that enable the “have nots” to stand on their own feet.

Small Saving Group is a highly successful model corresponding to this philosophy. I would like to share a personal experience with this model.

Professional organizations outsource lot of services which can be easily performed by unskilled people. Tea counters, book binding work, stationary counters, waste management and housekeeping are some of the areas.

Our experience with Tea Counter and Book Binding is very encouraging. We invited a Women Small Saving Group to manage the tea stall in our cafeteria. The women were thrilled with this proposal and quickly gathered their resources to take on the challenge. They visited tea stall in city area to learn how they manage load at peak hours. Within a week they arranged for necessary services like LPG Connection and Milk supply.

CSR team came forward to groom the women in terms of their get up, communication, maintaining quality service etc. Employees also welcomed this gesture and encouraged the women from day one. It’s almost one year now since we started. And the experience is really reassuring.

Four families have got employment through this initiative and the income is pretty decent. This also inspired other members of their SSG to approach organizations for similar services. We are happy that a small gesture from our side made a difference in their lives!

The initiative was appreciated by many voluntary agencies and it was also mentioned in newspaper (link to newspaper article in Marathi language http://onlinenews.lokmat.com/php/detailedoxygen.php?id=Oxygen-57-1-05-12-2008-d5f95&ndate=2008-12-05 ).

  1. shilpa
    July 24, 2008 at 7:02 am

    Good Job

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