Mumbai: Marico Limited, one of the leading FMCG brands in India, has claimed the prestigious FICCI CSR Award 2021. Following the jury meet held in August 2021, the decision was reached unanimously to recognize Marico Limited for its innovative, rural-ready training initiatives for teachers in government schools.
In partnership with LeapForWord and tech enabler Zeapl, Nihar Shanti Pathshala Funwala rolled out a WhatsApp-based Teacher Empowerment initiative. The technological upgrade aimed to arm the teachers with the necessary resources and skills to bolster English literacy among the students using engaging educational content in innovative, practical, and rural-ready formats. Since March 2020, Nihar Shanti Pathshala Funwala has successfully trained over 1.3 lakh teachers across 64,000 schools while improving access to English learning for more than 1 million students from over 31,000 villages in Madhya Pradesh.
Speaking on receiving the accolades, Udayraj Prabhu, Executive Vice President – Business Process Transformation & IT at Marico Limited and Head – CSR, commented, “At Marico, we have always aspired towards bringing a difference in the lives of the people. Through the training and literacy programs under the Nihar Shanti Pathshala Funwala (NSPF) initiative, our aim was to do just that. From identifying the learning and skill gap among teachers to streamlining resources for students, we’ve aimed to make the necessary education accessible, inclusive, and feasible for all in the face of the pandemic. We are grateful to the FICCI jury for recognizing our efforts. The award will continue to motivate us as we expand our initiatives across more districts in the country. I’d like to thank our associated NGO partner and everyone involved for actively supporting us in our goals. I’d also like to thank the state governments for their vision of strengthening the learning capital in their states and for becoming our partners in facilitating the necessary resources and guidance to the leaders of tomorrow.”
Chaired by Amit Chandra, Chairman of Bain Capital Private Equity, India, the jury consisted of eminent personalities from the worlds of business and education. These included Nishi Vasudeva, former CMD, HPCL; Pranjal Sharma, Economic Analyst, Advisor & Writer; Ms. Ranjana Agarwal, Founder, Vaish Associates; and Mr. Arumugam Kalimuthu, Director, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Institute.