Edelweiss is one of India’s leading diversified financial services conglomerates, recently announced a public service and awareness initiative, #HelpYourHelp, a platform that helps build awareness and facilitates change for the domestic help community, who have been impacted by Covid-19. Battling loss of income and job insecurity, the pandemic has painfully highlighted their lack of financial preparedness. The Help Your Help platform attempts to educate and encourage individuals to empower this unorganized community over the long-haul, through a digital repository of 20+ Government welfare schemes, across various areas like Finance, Health, Women and Children. It also simplifies the process for acquiring important Documentation that allows this community to unlock the benefits of these welfare schemes. Kick-started a few weeks ago, this purely organic campaign has witnessed over 3,000 individuals coming forward to pledge their support.
As part of the campaign, Edelweiss Group launched a film that takes one through a montage of several instances wherein their domestic help – caregivers, cleaners, security guards, drivers, cooks – have stood by them, being their everyday heroes and life support. The film highlights the fact that while one helps them tide over their daily struggles, they desperately need long-term financial security. The video garnered a tremendously positive response and was extensively shared across platforms.
To heighten awareness around the campaign, Edelweiss Group encouraged their Twitter followers to show their appreciation for their help with the hashtags #ThankYourHelp and #HelpYourHelp. Personal experiences shared by enthusiastic followers aided in breaking through the clutter with both hashtags trending in 6 cities across India.
Shabnam Panjwani, Group Head – Marketing & Communications, Edelweiss Group talks about the initiative……..
Can you take us through this initiative and how was it strategized?
At Edelweiss, we have always been driven to look beyond business, rising to the needs of the community we operate in and giving back in a meaningful way. While the idea for this initiative germinated about a year ago, the current COVID pandemic accelerated this initiative as we witnessed firsthand, the challenges faced by our domestic help and support staff. Largely unsung heroes, they truly are our real life support and despite many of us stepping in to help with advance salaries and essentials, the larger issue – lack of long-term financial preparedness and social security, in many cases due to lack of access or knowledge – as yet remains unresolved. Thus, we asked ourselves a pertinent question – How can we help resolve this and help make them financially and socially secure and stable?
This gave rise to www.HelpYourHelp.com. Targeted at individuals – people like you and me – this is an initiative to help us go beyond mere talk and propel us to act, enabling one to choose from relevant Government welfare schemes that can help empower this unorganized community over the long-haul.
Could you please explain the rationale behind identifying schemes specific to Finance, Health, and other fields?
The aim of this initiative was to build long-term financial security and preparedness, of the unorganized sector – our domestic help, caregivers, cooks, security personnel, office boys etc.. True to the adage –“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”, this platform focused of areas that would be most beneficial to reduce their economic vulnerabilities. Through the HelpYourHelp platform that we have built in-house, we provide a repository of over 20 government welfare schemes in FIVE areas- finance, health, women and child development and identification documents, which we realized posed a huge challenge for this community.
Our team of Emerging Leaders across the organization, carefully studied the needs of the community and scoured 9000 odd schemes to narrow down on the most relevant across these areas. Community insights from our philanthropic arm – EdelGive Foundation, which has been at the forefront of driving societal change over the last decade, helped us further fine-tune the schemes most pertinent to the general well-being of the community.
Have you set up a cell to identify these people or was it done with your partnership with Haqdarshak?
#HelpYourHelp is a platform which helps build awareness, educate and facilitates change for the cause of the community of helpers. This enabling platform helps individuals identify the people in their own lives that could do with their support. The aim of the platform is to educate and encourage individuals to empower this unorganized community over the long-haul, through a digital repository of 20+ Government welfare schemes. For advisory and execution support, facilitating the paperwork, applications etc., we have collaborated with – Haqdarshak, which is a social enterprise working with communities to provide them with access to welfare schemes.
How did the campaign work on the social media platform?
Our digital public awareness campaign was purely organically led, with over 5600+ individuals coming forward and pledging to help their help. We reached out to Edelweiss’ extensive network of employees, partners and customers to give their support to this movement and our video highlighting the initiative, drew tremendous positive response, resulting in extensive shares via email, social media and WhatsApp. We also deployed several engagement ideas such as posting ‘Selfies with Your Help’, ‘Thank Your Help’ etc., and each of these ideas received enthusiastic participation, resulting in #HelpYourHelp trending at #4 in Mumbai.
The campaign received stellar support from top Olympic athletes such as Dipa Karmakar (Gymnast and Padma Shri Awardee), Hima Das (Indian Sprinter and Arjuna Awardee), Rani Rampal (Captain of the Indian Women’s Hockey Team and Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Awardee), Sukant Kadam (Ace Para-Badminton Shuttler and Shiv Chhatrapati Awardee) and Manika Batra (Table Tennis Champion). Celebrities such as Sonu Sood, Mandira Bedi and Cyrus Broacha, wholeheartedly extended their support, in person and on social channels. Through their influence and reach, they proactively created further awareness for the campaign, amongst their followers.
Now with the lockdown more or less eased out, do you plan to continue with this initiative?
What started as an initiative, we hope will now translate into a full-fledged movement. While the lockdown has eased, financial unpreparedness and lack of security needs to be constantly addressed. Our commitment to this initiative is long-term and we will continue to put in our efforts to build awareness and do our bit to bring about long-lasting impact on the lives of the vulnerable communities in society.