The consultation discussed how to plan the use of CSR funds for ensuring holistic development of women. The deliberations centred on the role of CSR in achieving SDGs, women empowerment and the scope for creating collaborative spaces.
Speakers at a roundtable organised by the National Commission for Women (NCW) on Thursday recognised corporate social responsibility as a means to tackle gender inequality. They were speaking at a roundtable on ‘Women Empowerment in India and CSR as a Catalyst’ organised by NCW in collaboration with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).
The consultative meeting had leaders from standard industrial bodies and heads of major corporate foundations. The consultation discussed how to plan the use of CSR funds for ensuring holistic development of women. The deliberations centred on the role of CSR in achieving SDGs, women empowerment and the scope for creating collaborative spaces.
The meeting was chaired by Rekha Sharma, NCW chairperson along with Ashank Desai, co-chairman, CII national committee on CSR and was attended by CSR heads of 32 corporates besides other officials from NCW.
Rekha Sharma touched upon various facets of women empowerment where industry can engage and collaborate and spoke of the scope of business and industry prioritising rehabilitation of survivors of domestic violence, livelihood generation of rescued women from human trafficking, skilling for disabled women, education of the girl child and involving in research and collection of data.
“CSR is a new means to tackle gender inequality. Women empowerment across all sectors can be enhanced if corporates can identify common priorities and work together collaboratively in order to bring about major change that can be seen,” Rekha Sharma said.
Participants discussed challenges in the way of empowering women in sectors such as skilling and shelter for trafficked women, financial inclusion and child support services for working women. Views were also sought and expressed on the government’s role in promoting women empowerment and how CSR can facilitate the empowerment.