June 09, 2018

UN GCNI's 'Innovative Practices Award 2018' conferred on Tata Steel

Jamshedpur: Tata Steel was conferred the prestigious Innovative Practices Award 2018 on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for its ‘Thousand Schools Programme’ by UN Global Compact Network India (GCNI) during its 13th National Convention held in Bengaluru yesterday.

Tata Steel officials receiving the prestigious Innovative Practices Award 2018 for its Thousand Schools Programme

The award was received by Sourav Roy, chief, corporate social responsibility, Tata Steel, from Yuri Afanasiev, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative. A total of 65 organisations across India including public and private sector enterprises, multinationals, MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises), NGOs, entrepreneurs and B-schools had submitted entries for the awards in the form of case studies to showcase their efforts in implementing CSR and sustainability initiative, aligned with one or more of the 17 UN SDGs.

The awards were given in two categories i.e., private and public in the corporate sector and one category each in NGO and B-school sectors. Tata Steel was the recipient of the award in the Corporate Private category for its work towards SDG 4 i.e., ensuring inclusive and quality education for all and promoting lifelong learning. The award was announced by a four-member jury which was chaired by Bhaskar Chatterjee, IAS (retired), one of the architects of CSR policy and NVGs (National Voluntary Guidelines) in India. The jury termed Tata Steel's Thousand Schools Programme a benchmark of CSR.

On June 2, 2018, a total of 12 shortlisted organisations presented their case studies in front of the jury in New Delhi. The top four organisations got an opportunity to present their case studies during the 13th National Convocation of GCNI and were awarded certificate and trophy. The other winning entries included initiatives from ONGC, Indian Society of Agribusiness Professionals (ISAP), National Stock Exchange of India (NSE) Foundation and SP Jain Institute of Management and Research, in the given order.

The United Nations has ushered in the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals with an aim to end poverty, hunger, and assure gender equality across the globe. The goal of sustainable development is to meet the needs of today, without compromising the needs of tomorrow.

Expressing happiness on the recognition, Sunil Bhaskaran, vice president, corporate services, Tata Steel, said, "Tata Steel recognises education as a fundamental need in society, and therefore, is a core aspect of Tata Steel's CSR intervention. 1000 Schools Programme is one of our endeavours to augment education system in government schools and contribute to nation building. This award reflects the faith that our communities have in us and gives us the impetus to continue the good work".

On receiving the award, Mr Roy mentioned, “We are committed to the sustainable well-being of the communities we serve, and believe that quality education for children is a priority in this endeavour. The Thousand Schools Programme is our signature project in this domain, which has been able to bring children back to the schooling system, create an ecosystem for learning outcomes and enhance community-led governance across 1463 government schools in Odisha and Jharkhand. This award would not have been possible without the trust placed in us by our communities as well as our partner, ASPIRE, and we thank them for this."