Friday, May 13, 2022

HCL Foundation Kicks Off Pan India Symposium ‘CSR For HCL Grant Edition VIII In Bengaluru

* HCL Foundation has already invested INR 900 crores in CSR in the last 11 years 

* Launches HCL Grant Edition VIII with a commitment of INR 16.5 crores 

HCL Foundation (HCLF), the CSR (corporate social responsibility) arm of HCL Technologies, hosted the first pan India Symposium for HCL Grant Edition VIII in Bengaluru for NGOs in Karnataka and the neighboring states at the Christ University.  

HCL Foundation strongly believes in the power of grassroots empowerment. The HCL Grant Symposium Series – ‘CSR for Nation Building’ is one such opportunity that enables us to engage, co-learn, and co-create ideas for sustained nation-building, from the ground-up. 

The daylong event comprised a panel discussion with local NGO representatives and civil society experts on the theme ‘Creating Impact Along with Compliances Under CSR.’ A total of 200 NGOs were present at the event with a participation of over 350 people, representing many parts of the region.  

There was an insightful panel discussion and a fireside chat with eminent speakers- Ms. Nidhi Pundhir, Director, HCL Foundation; Mr. Srikrishna Sridhar Murthy (Krishna), Co-founder and CEO, Sattva; Mr. Rishabh Lalani, Independent Consultant; Mr. Rohit Bahadur, Partner Social and Sustainability Advisory, Grant Thornton and Mr. Nikhil Pant, Chief Executive Officer, REACHA who also moderated the panel. 

Mr. Vijay Mallya, EVP & Global Head Delivery, Financial Services, HCL Technologies, spoke about the role of creating meaningful partnerships not just for business but also for social impact. 

Ms. Nidhi Pundhir, Director, HCL Foundation, set the context by presenting an overview of the HCL Foundation and its community development journey in India. She also introduced HCL Grant, a key project for supporting NGOs doing exemplary work in rural development.  

The symposium comprised several sessions such as a Masterclass/workshop on CSR Law and New Amendment by Mr. Bhomik Shah, CEO and Founder, CSRBox and NGOBox, and Mr. Nikhil Pant, Chief Executive Officer, REACHA. The symposium also had a Workshop/Masterclass by Dr. Usha Manjunath, Director & Professor, IIHMR (Institute of Health Management Research), Bangalore on Programme Management for Non-Profits. A motivational talk on reshaping social work in the post-Covid world was conducted by Mr. Ravi Sreedharan, Founder, ISDM (Indian School of Development Management). 

This is the second time that the HCL Foundation has conducted a symposium in Bengaluru. The first symposium in 2019 received an overwhelming response from NGOs in the state and the participation has been more encouraging this year.  

SAAHAS, a Bengaluru-based NGO, was HCL Grant Winner in 2020 for its project on “Sustainable Waste Management through Community-Owned Rural Resource Recovery Systems,” which is being implemented across four districts – Udupi, Dakshina Kannada, Ballari, and Ramanagara of Karnataka. 

Through this Symposium, HCL Foundation reached out to the NGOs on CSR mandate, challenges, and opportunities in the local area development, Proposal Writing, and Project Management and encouraged them to apply for the HCL Grant 2022. The state has many good NGOs working in the field of Education, Health, and Environment, which could benefit from the symposium.  

The HCL Grant Pan-India Symposiums is an initiative by the HCL Foundation to bring together NGOs, government, corporates, and policymakers from across India on one platform to interact and develop regional as well as a sectoral understanding of CSR (corporate social responsibility) and deliberate upon how to contribute toward nation-building. It will also have CSR & sector experts, academicians, HCL Grant recipient NGOs, and other development sector practitioners on panel to meet and share their experiences. 

HCL Grant Symposiums, being conducted across 10 States & UTs of India this year, aims to invite all interested development sector professionals, non-profits, social purpose organizations and academic institutions to join for the symposiums at various locations.  

Through these symposiums, HCL Foundation aims to inform NGOs about HCL Grant, one of the most coveted institutionalized grants available in India, which identifies NGOs doing path-breaking work in rural development through an independent, robust, and democratic process. 

This is the eighth consecutive edition of the HCL Grant in which grants will be awarded in the categories of Education, Health, and Environment, with a commitment of ?5 crores for a three-year project in each category. The Grant would also reward the other finalists with ?25 lakhs for a one-year project. The total fund committed for the eighth edition is ?16.5 crores.  

HCL Grant has seen a significant increase in registrations. Since 2016 onwards 35000+ Registrations, 7500+ Applications has been received under HCL Grant. The idea of the HCL Grant is not only to recognize the work of NGOs contributing to the nation’s growth and development but to also stay engaged with them to achieve the desired impact. 

The HCL Grant Compendium published each year features not just the winners, but also the work of up to 30 shortlisted NGOs, 10 from each category. It is a step toward re-establishing the value of strong governance in civil society and providing international visibility to Indian NGOs doing path-breaking work in the rural development sector. 

For more information, visit 

Quote of Ms. Nidhi Pundhir, Director, HCL Foundation 

HCL Foundation, through HCL Grant Symposiums Edition VIII, aims to bring together NGOs, Government, Corporates, and Policymakers across India on one platform to develop a regional and a sectoral understanding of CSR (corporate social responsibility) and deliberate upon how it can contribute toward #NationBuilding. 

We are always committed to supporting the commendable work NGOs are doing at the grassroots level in the Education, Health, and Environment sectors. We believe that the symposiums will efficiently empower NGOs with the latest information on best practices and transformative ideas and support them in building a better India. 

In 2020, we had SAAHAS, a Bengaluru-based NGO, as our HCL Grant Winner for its project “Sustainable Waste Management through Community-Owned Rural Resource Recovery Systems.” We have witnessed an overwhelming response to the symposium today and are delighted to see many NGOs coming in with their interesting work and hope that the sessions will help participant NGOs re-establish strong governance in civil society.  

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