Zensar foundation is transforming the lives of disadvantaged children

Right from skill based training to helping dropouts getting jobs, Zensar Foundation has undertaken a plethora of CSR initiatives.


The triple bottomline approach at Zensar Technologies is aligned with continuous innovation and excellence and for the same a separate entity called Zensar foundation has been established that undertakes all the CSR activities of the same.

A pan volunteering framework has been established which engages Zensar technologies with the communities, promoting sustainable development. It is engaged in a lot of CSR initiatives directed at Community Development, Employability Enhancement and Environment Sustenance.

In order to enhance the roots of sustainability and make sure the outreach is not restricted to a particular zone, Zensar has partnered with several NGOs and like minded organizations like Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), Unnati Foundation, Connecting NGO, and Equal Community Foundation (ECF). Some of the sectors in which the Zensar foundation undertakes it CSR activities include Health, Education and Environment.

We take a look at the CSR initiatives of Zensar foundation,

Education

The initiatives undertaken in the education field can be broadly categorized into 3 categories:

1. English Proficiency

Zensar is transforming the lives of many children from poor background to make them ‘citizens of the world’. The Udaan English center was established on 1st February, 2012. This center is a perfect blend of the English proficiency and an understanding of the digital medium of the virtual world. Children from Ambedkar Vasti community are selected for this center. A baseline assessment is conducted at the time of admission and the entire module has a lot of assessments with an assessment at the end of each module. On a daily basis, children spend 2 hours learning English and they also learn basic computer operations along with English. Teachers are present at all times to help the children and the slow learners along with children who have less attention span. The students are taught the art of meditating for 15 minutes daily and they are also being trained to become independent learners. These involve using the dictionary on their own, google new ideas and also learn from their peers and help them in learning as well. In order to make the process transparent, parents are involved at each and every step. Parents are regularly invited to classroom and students teach their parents the things which they have learnt.

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Photo source: Pbs

Zensar volunteers are also a part of the movement. They teach the students music, dance, painting, etc. Various movies are being screened for the students and the art of storytelling is also used to teach them new ideas. The programme has brought a positive change in the lives of 100 children, their families and the overall community. The entire Udaan English programme has been scaled into 6 municipal schools. An additional version of the programme called the ‘Speedy Spoken English’ has also been created upon the requests of the schools. Dipti an Udaan teacher said, “Every student at Udaan is a success story in her/his own right.”

The outcome has been awe inspiring and children have now started to think in English which is very well evident from their verbal skills and the way they use the language. In July 2015, Udaan opened its doors to all, resulting in the enrolment of 100 students immediately.

Other places where the Udaan English Programme has been established includes Udaan English programme; Chandan Nagar and Kharadi Municipal Corporation schools, Pune and also the Akshar school programme, Hyderabad.

5 NDLM Pune

Photo source: Light House Insights

2. Computer Literacy

As mentioned above, children are also taught the basics of computer operations so that they can learn the technological aspects of this world as well. IT school programme, Pune and Hyderabad have been especially devoted to the task of computer literacy.

3. Digital Literacy

The national digital literacy aims to increase the opportunity for development and economic viability in our nation. The first National Digital Literacy Mission (NDLM) center was started in Hyderabad on 19th July. For a period of 5 hours, the centre runs from 3.30 Pm to 8.30 PM. 41 students successfully completed the first batch of training. These students were the first to go through the Digital Literacy assessment held by NIELET (National Institute of Electronics & Information Technology) which is a relevant central government authority. The first NDLM center in Pune was launched on 28th October, 2015. Digital literacy is being spread thorough these centres and they facilitate the use of digitally enabled services. At least one member per household will be trained in computer literacy and will be taught to use tablets, smart phones and Internet to search for relevant information, using the mail technology and access various e-governance services. One of the centres is located in Annabhau Sathe Samaj Mandir in the Yamuna Nagar slum community, Viman Nagar, Pune. Over 60 percent of the households have been trained in the first year in community and the outcome has been motivating as well.

Digital Literacy Bus

This is Zensar foundation’s third centre and was launched in August 2015. This being a joint initiative between ZF and PMC runs in a partnership with NASSCOM foundation. This bus is outfitted with 16 computers which are pre loaded with Digital Literacy curriculum. This moves from community to community in order to train participants from across the Pune.

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Photo source: Pbs

Dr. Ganesh Natarajan, CEO and Vice Chairman, Zensar Technologies said, “This is a significant step in taking forward the crusade of empowering people at the grassroots level with basic digital literacy skills. We are pleased with the success of the first three NDLM centres set up in the cities of Pune and Hyderabad, including the recent launch of Pune’s first Digital Literacy bus. Our vision is to expand the scope and reach out to many more citizens. I am sure that this centre will provide the springboard to the people of Sudumbre to build a better quality of life in every sphere.”

Photo source: http://72.78.249.126/SakaalTimesBeta/20150901/images/5396627122693315279/5153749454005178071_Org.jpg

Photo source: http://72.78.249.126/SakaalTimesBeta/20150901/images/5396627122693315279/5153749454005178071_Org.jpg

Healthcare

1. Treatment of illnesses

Physicians visit the Chandan Nagar and Yamuna Nagar communities in Pune and Anjaiah Nagar in Hyderabad for free check-up and medicines. To enhance the spirit of the same, monthly general health camps are held at Pune and Hyderabad.

2. Reduction of Malnutrition

The Zensar Foundation has effectively tried to reduce malnutrition by partnering with the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) program and supporting its effective implementation.

Community Mobilization

Building a rapport with the community members is utmost important and for the same, members of Zensar Technologies have been working diligently. They have been conducting Community Mobilization session in the Chandan Nagar community, Pune for more than a year now. Women and children have come forward to form their own self-help groups and it has led to the development of the community.

Gender Equity

Gender sensitization programmes are held by the Equal Community Foundation.

Employability: Unnati Skill Development centre

Unnati which operates in Swargate, Pune is an employability program for underprivileged youth. Any youth from underprivileged background is welcome to join the program. The programme includes 50 days of training and ensures job steadiness. People are trained in retail, administrative and hospitality sectors. All the youth who complete the training successfully are employed successfully. The program has been running since January 2014 and all the 200 graduates have been employed. Positive developments have been witnessed in the youth who were a part of this development centre.

Other activities which form a part of the employability scheme include the following aspects:

  • Hardware and networking course
  • Employability skills development programme
  • Global leadership development programme.

Udaan Biodiversity Park

Zensar has collaborated with Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) to transform a 2 acre barren leased land into a biodiversity park in Viman Nagar, Pune. The park which is experimental and educative addresses many categories of plants. The park has 65 different medicinal, flowering, aromatic plants which allow various organisms to thrive and grow.

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The park houses medicinally therapeutic herbs, aromatic herbs, bird-friendly trees and a 500 square foot water body. This park gives the permission to visitors to rub and taste the herbs thereby translating the theoretical knowledge into experiential learning. It also educates people about the remedial herbs and use of medicinal herbs like Tulsi, etc. The park has trail with Braille signages which helps the visually challenged visitors as well.

In house resource management

Energy Management

Various individual activities of all the employees have been brought under a specific umbrella called the Low Carbon Zensar movement. Zensar has created a five point green agenda which aims to encourage associates, people from IT industry and community to adopt a green lifestyle and be catalysts for tomorrow’s green change. The five point agenda includes awareness, conservation, reduce, recycle, reuse, green computing and waste management.

Zensar has launched a carbon calculator which helps in tracking the individual’s carbon footprint. Zensar has been conducting various environmental sessions on issues like global warming, waste management, etc.

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Various experts from Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), Centre for Environment Education (CEE), Greenpeace have helped in undertaking the sessions in different parts of the city. Environment activists and waste management experts have also been a part of this movement. Various activities are organized every year as a part of the World Environment week. In order to encourage responsible buying, every year Zensar sets up a stall selling eco friendly products.

Zensar has partnered with Atlanta Foundation and Pune Pedal Power to conduct Cycle for Environment in Hyderabad and Pune.

Waste management, water management, fuel management and miscellaneous activities also form a part of the in house energy management programme.

Some of the in house green initiatives of Zensar technologies are as follows:

  • Save Printer Consumables
  • Power Management
  • Auto Hibernation
  • Disposal of old equipments through recycling
  • Data center for design optimization

Some of the estimated figures by Zensar technologies state:

1. Saving of Power due to Server Virtualization = approx 2, 80,000 kwh/year
2. Saving of Space due to Server Virtualization = approx 50% of non-virtualized server space
3. Saving of Cooling due to Server Virtualization = approx 112000 kwh/year

Printer consumables: Number of Cartridge saving in Printers due to refilling = approx 400/yr

Auto Hibernation mode (power save mode)

  • Saving in UPS Power = approx 1,21,338 kwh/yr
  • Increase in the Life of the asset thereby reducing the e-waste
  • 3 Total e-waste/ recycling done in FY 12-13 = 1990KG

 

 


  ABOUT THE AUTHOR
A dreamer with a singular expression - Smile! Sanket is a media and journalism student at Symbiosis International University. When not writing, you can find him sipping coffee and reading entrepreneurial, political and leadership books. more

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  ABOUT THE AUTHOR
A dreamer with a singular expression - Smile! Sanket is a media and journalism student at Symbiosis International University. When not writing, you can find him sipping coffee and reading entrepreneurial, political and leadership books. more

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