Corporate Social Responsibility has become an essential part of all business organizations these days. The essence of this three words long term is giving back to the society a part of the profit that the business earns, in terms of social welfare. While it has now become a mandatory part of all corporations who wish to establish themselves in the market of today, the real heroes are those who have been contributing towards a better society from even before it was a part of the public image. One of those few is the Aditya Birla group, who along with other areas of social development has been a major contributor in women empowerment in the Indian society.
Despite the efforts of the government, healthcare in the rural areas remains a major cause of concern in our country. While everyone is equally affected by the lack of proper health care facilities, women are the worst hit in this regard for more reasons than one. One of the major challenges faced by the rural women during menstruation is the lack of closed bathing spaces that ensure privacy. To tackle this issue, the Aditya Birla Group has been involved in setting up 20,000 toilets across India as a part of helping the government’s open defecation free villages endeavor, which has been a great contribution to women’s health. Not only this, through their healthcare centers and hospitals, they have also provided reproductive healthcare and awareness to many rural families.
Proper education is the first and most important step towards ensuring women empowerment. With 42 schools across India, the Aditya Birla Group imparts quality education to over 45,000 students. We cannot hope to empower the feminine population without giving equal attention to educating the boys on this issue, which makes co-educational schools ever more important to the cause. Many girls are denied the right to education due to the lack of financial resources in their households which leads to the absence of many means. To ensure that such obstacles don’t hinder the growth of the women of tomorrow, the Aditya Birla Group supports 20 Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya that are residential schools for girls.
For those who have grown past the school-going stage, earning financial independence becomes a big problem. Many women across India are tormented by the families they are married into on a daily basis. What’s more depressing is the fact that they can’t break free of these bonds even if they want to since they lack the resources to supports themselves. To help women who find themselves in such dilemma, the Aditya Birla group has established over 4,500 Self Help Groups that have empowered over 45,000 women. Their Vocational Training Centers have trained over 95,000 people including both men and women. These skills which help earn a sustainable livelihood, when added to the life of a woman are her first step towards independence and thus the empowerment of the population as a whole.
The Aditya Birla Group has also been engaged in several other social welfare causes for women empowerment, two of which are widow re-marriage and dowry-less mass-marriages. The significance of these issues can be understood by the population of both the rural and urban India. They have also engaged in many awareness campaigns and programs aimed at upliftment and empowerment of women. What’s even more commendable about their social work is the fact that all the projects undertaken by the Aditya Birla Group are identified by conversing with the community involve. By getting down to the ground level the true face of a situation can be analyzed.
Corporations such as the Aditya Birla Group are a boon to any society that they are part of. Since it is such business giants that are indirectly running the world these days, this contribution to the issues of women empowerment are highly significant and much needed.