Tag Results

Positive Action for Children Fund

Deadline: March 29, 2016

The PACF aims to alleviate the impact of HIV and AIDS on women and children’s health by supporting interventions that engage affected communities, developing their capacity to participate and lead. This call is focused on non-governmental and community-based organizations that can deliver change at a community level thanks to their links with or representation of the communities affected.


Your application should focus on ending pediatric HIV and target one or more of the following five topics areas aligned to the Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission (PMTCT) WHO strategy.

  • Community Interventions Addressing Loss to Follow-up in PMTCT
  • Supporting Positive Mothers and their Affected Families
  • Preventing Unintended Pregnancies
  • Keeping Adolescent and Young Women HIV Negative
  • Identifying Children Living with HIV and Ensuring Early Infant Diagnosis

The PACF supports approaches that demonstrate the PACF values. Applicants should demonstrate how their proposals meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • Community Focused, Patient Focused and Family-Centred Approaches
  • Generating Demand
  • Addressing Stigma and Discrimination
  • Integration
  • Advocacy
  • Demonstrating Impact (Monitoring and Evaluation)
  • Sustainability

Please visit the website here for details on the application procedure.

USAID Request for Application-2015 Human Resource for Health Program

Deadline: June 22, 2015

The United States Government represented by the United Stated Agency for International Development (USAID) is seeking applications from non-federal entities registered and working in developing countries for its Human Resource Health Program 2030.

The goal of the program is to improve the accessibility, availability, acceptability and quality of the workforce needed to improve health outcomes and advance universal health coverage.

Focus Countries

Afghanistan, Bangladesh, DR Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Haiti, Indonesia, India, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Rwanda, Senegal, South Sudan, Tanzania, Yemen, Uganda, Zambia, Benin, Burkina Faso,  Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Mauritania,  Niger, Togo, Angola, Botswana, Cameroon, Lesotho, South Africa Vietnam, Dominican Republic, Guatemala and Guyana


  • Increase performance and productivity of health workforce.
  • Increase the number, skill mix and competency of the health workforce.
  • Strengthen HRH/HSS leadership and governance capacity
  • Increase sustainability of investment in health workforce.

Eligibility Criteria

  • The applying Organization must be US organization or non-US organization registered and working in developing countries.
  • Applicants must propose a minimum cost share of 15% of the projected USAID amount.

For more information, please visit the link here and search for the opportunity number RFA-OAA-15-000021.

DBS Foundation Grant Program 2015

Deadline: Closed

The DBS Foundation has issues a call for applications for its various grant programs. The grant program assists social enterprises with monetary grants to make their projects sustainable and to assess the feasibility of the product to scale up their business in order to improve social impact on the society.

Types of Grants

  1. Pilot/prototype grants of up to SGD 50,000 – This is for social enterprises with new, innovative and scalable ideas that address relevant social problems. Social enterprises with a prototype ready for testing or a pilot-stage idea that needs funds to begin.
  2. Organisational grants of up to SGD 100,000 – This is for social enterprises that have been in operation for at least 2 years and need support to build up their organization e.g. acquiring fixed assets, building a team, product research and development, marketing, etc. Grants are expected to be directly used to grow the business, further social impact and/or ensure sustainability.
  3. Scale-up grants – This is for social enterprises that have been operating for over 3 years and seek grants and other forms of financing to scale up.

Eligible Countries – China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Singapore, and Taiwan.

Eligibility Information

DBS does not fund:

  • Specific individual fellowships/stipends and personal expenses, charities or NGOs primarily dependent on donations.
  • Religious organisations, election campaigns, general fund-raising drives or event sponsorship.

For more information, visit the DBS Foundation.

Business Catalist – Catalytic Initiative for Social Transformation

1. Background

RSVP to [email protected] by Nov. 8th

To collaborate and grow is the essence of doing business. As companies today look to be more conscious of their impact  on society as a whole, the need to partner with social organisations which share similar goals becomes paramount. Samhita Social Ventures invites you to participate in the event “Business Catalist – Catalytic Initiative for Social Transformation”on Monday, November 10, 2014

Catalist is part of a series of events supported by Outlook India for which Samhita is a knowledge partner. This collaboration is supported by the Impact Economy Innovations Fund (IEIF) Grant aimed at building stronger infrastructure for the fast growing impact investing industry in India.

Business Catalist will provide an understanding of the various models of partnership. The event will also elaborate on and provide opportunities for company-social enterprise collaboration and share learnings and insights gained from our experience in facilitating strategic partnerships between social enterprises and companies.

2.  Target audience

The audience will consist of a mix of stalwarts, experts and key personnel working in the CSR, sustainability, rural marketing and supply chain departments in companies, impact investors and social entrepreneurs.

The keynote addresses will be delivered by Ajay Piramal, Chairman, Piramal Group and D Shivakumar, Chairman and CEO, Pepsico India Region.
Following the keynote, the panel discussion on corporate and social enterprise partnerships will include eminent professionals such as
Kishore Biyani, Founder and CEO, Future Group
Ronnie Screwvala, Founder, UTV, Unilazer Ventures, Swades Foundation
Shankar Venkateswaran, Chief of Sustainability Initiatives, Tata Group
Ajit Mahadevan, India Director, Acumen Fund
Anurag Agrawal, Director and CEO, Intellecap
Moderated by Priya Naik, Founder and CEO, Samhita Social Ventures
The panel will last 45 minutes followed by a question and answer session for 30 minutes. This will be followed by a presentation by K Ramkumar, President, ICICI Foundation and a networking dinner
There are no registration fees
Companies and impact investors, please RSVP your participation to  [email protected] by November 8, 2014.
Social Enterprises, please RSVP your participation to [email protected] by November 8, 2014.

Times of India Social Impact Awards 2014

Deadline: October 13, 2014

Times of India (TOI) announces the third edition of  Social Impact Awards 2014 in order to honor and popularize the activities of thousands of people who are not satisfied with sitting back and watching, who have taken the plunge and worked for delivering such essential needs to our fellow citizens as education, healthcare and decent livelihoods. These Awards will also recognize work towards saving the environment and empowerment of people. The TOI Social Impact Awards 2014 are in joint venture with Aditya Birla Group.


The Award is open in five categories namely:             

  1. Education
  2. Health
  3. Environment
  4. Livelihoods
  5. Advocacy and Empowerment

Who can participate?

  • NGOs
  • Corporates
  • Government organizations

Standards for Selection:

Entrance will be judged based on the observing parameters

  1. Significance of Issues Addressed
  2. Scale of Impact
  3. Replicability
  4. Sustainability
  5. Finances
  6. People Participation
  7. Innovativeness
  8. Promotion of Equity

For further details on the application procedure, visit the website here.

New circular on CSR Rules: Taking the ‘liberal’ stance to help kick-start implementation

While the government had notified the rules for implementation of Sec 135 (provisions on Corporate Social Responsibility) of the Companies Act 2013 on February 27, companies and other key stakeholders engaged in social development had sought clarifications on many of the key provisions. Last week, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) issued a General Circular No. 21/2014, to address the major issues.

The clarifications have considerably enhanced the flexibility of the guidelines for companies to adhere to the law, particularly with regard to activities that can be undertaken and to their own involvement in these activities. In our view, the clarifications will help kick-start CSR efforts, particularly by companies that have not been actively engaged in CSR activities in the past.

While some points may need further clarification, we believe that these too will be addressed soon.

The key highlights of the circular are:                                               

1.  More companies will now be covered under Sec 135: The circular has clarified that companies that have met the financial thresholds specified in the Act in any of the three financial years prior to FY2014-15 will be liable to comply. We believe this provision may have resulted in some expansion in the list of companies covered by the regulation, vis-à-vis the earlier interpretation of one reference year.

2.  ‘Liberal interpretation’ means a wider range of activities can now be taken up: The circular mentions that companies developing programs as part of their CSR efforts can interpret Schedule VII of the Companies Act 2013 liberally; while some activities being undertaken or currently being planned may not exactly match with the wording of Schedule VII, these could be taken up if they capture the essence of the subjects mentioned. Our reading of the illustrations in the MCA circular, suggests that across cause areas, activities that support the larger cause – even if this is in an indirect or peripheral way – will be allowed as CSR as per the law. This will include research as well as awareness building programs undertaken through mainstream media channels.

MCA has explicitly mentioned that:

  • Programs around road safety, creating consumer awareness, support to technology incubators not located within academic institutions (provided they are approved by the Department of Science & Technology) can be considered as CSR programs
  • Awareness programs such as financial literacy will be included as CSR activities. For the safety awareness program that the MCA has illustrated, expenditure on awareness building through print and AV electronic media is included
  • Expenses on research and studies on all areas covered under Schedule VII will also be included as CSR expenditure
  • Rural development has been defined as ‘any project meant for development of rural India’. Hence, a wide range of projects could be classified under this category.

Additional details, including cases where expenditure will not be permitted to be accounted for as CSR spend, are provided in the  General Circular No. 21/2014 by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs,Government of India. Some notable exclusions are:

  • Sustainable urban development and urban transport systems
  • Capacity development of government officials and elected representatives
  • Professional exchange programs between countries
  • Any development expenditure mandated by state/local government regulations

3.  One-off events will not be considered as CSR activities: The circular states that CSR activities have to be in the nature of projects/programs rather than one-off events such as marathons, awards, charitable contributions and advertisements and sponsorships given to TV programs. Such events shall not qualify as CSR expenditure..

4.  CSR employees’ salaries and monetary value of employee volunteering can be considered as CSR spend: The circular mentions that the CSR expenditure will include the CSR employees’ salaries. Also, recognition of the monetary value of employee volunteering as CSR expenditure is a welcome step for companies which have a huge and/or high cost employee base and especially those that have no identifiable local community as stakeholders (IT companies, investment banks etc). This expenditure will be calculated in proportion to employees’ time/ hours spent specifically on CSR activities

5.  A foreign holding company’s spend on CSR activities in India can be counted as CSR spending of their Indian subsidiary: This will be valid only if the CSR expenditure is routed through the Indian subsidiary. This will be beneficial for many Indian subsidiaries of foreign companies that are required to undertake CSR expenditure according to the Act, since some large global companies also directly fund social development programs in India.

6.  Corpus expenditure can be included as CSR expenditure: The circular states that contribution to corpus of a trust/society/section 8 company will qualify as CSR expenditure, as long as it is created exclusively for a purpose that is directly relatable to a cause covered in Schedule VII of the Act. It would have been helpful to provide additional clarity on whether such contributions, which may be lumpy and thus in excess of the prescribed CSR spend for the year, could be adjusted and counted as CSR spend in the following financial years.

The circular does not lay down any deadline for creation and posting of CSR policies by companies, which will be a crucial first step for going ahead with implementation for companies that have not undertaken CSR in a structured way in the past. However, we hope that this will be addressed in circulars/FAQs expected soon.

Click here to download the PDF version of this article.

For all the highlights of the CSR rules as per the Companies Act 2013, click here.


Kaarmic Education Services – Bridge between education and employability

The Challenge

India has made progress in enrolling children in school but it has failed to deliver quality education. Thus, the next big challenge is bringing quality in education. Learning assessments show that children are not learning basics of literacy and numeracy. Almost 34% of students do not complete primary school (2010)[i] and about 80% never make it to college[ii] and those who remain in school receive low-quality instruction. A global study Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) ranked India nearly at the bottom in mathematics and reading skills underscoring the magnitude of the problem of quality of education[iii]. As a result, India faces significant shortages in skilled labour and individuals with minimum levels of cognitive skills and the public education system has struggled to meet this demand. India is banking on half its population being below the age of 25 for sustainable growth. We will be unable to reap the benefits of this demographic dividend unless we make investments to provide quality education and emphasize on learning outcomes that prepare young people with skills to be productively employed.


Kaarmic Education Services Private Limited (KESPL) and its Objective

KESPL is a social enterprise, which works with private educational institutes serving low -income communities to provide quality, affordable education and skill development programs in Hyderabad and Mumbai in order to bridge the employability gap and develop a more informed and skilled workforce for tomorrow’s India. The mission of KESPL is to build a more educated, empowered and employed India. It’s objectives are to create more industry aware graduates, help students with initial internship and industry experience to help them launch their careers, identify individual talent and promote them in the right direction, provide companies the opportunity to brand themselves in colleges and develop a connect between the corporate sector and the college ecosystem.

Through its products like “The Bridge Program” and the “School Development Program” it hopes to build a pool of educated, skilled and employable talent emerging from the low-income communities. It starts its intervention early, right from Grade 6 in schools and also works with students pursuing their Masters degree. Its work is dedicated to helping students understand their competencies, passions, industry realities and also helps them find the right employment. Its programs are conducted in educational institutes, ranging from slum schools to Tier 2 – Tier 3 colleges. In schools it provides affordable career guidance, effective teacher training to under qualified teachers and student development programs such as spoken English and computer literacy. In colleges it provides self-assessment tools to students, career specific student-industry interaction through events and online platform, specialized skills training as required by the industry, experience building opportunities and job placements. Experts from over 13 countries have helped design the curriculum for all its programs to match international standards.


The Bridge Program

Bridge is a unique workshop designed to fill the gap that exists between the young minds and businesses in India, with a vision to enhance the quality of employability. KESPL believes that this in turn would contribute towards the competitive advantage of our workforce in the global market and lead to the economic welfare of the nation as a whole. It is a career centric workshop designed in collaboration with industry specialists and HR professionals whose aim is to expose the youth to business realities with activities, discussions, and consultations.


Corporate Partnerships

KESPL partners with companies and industry professionals in a unique way through the India Employability Development Network (IEDN). This is an initiative by KESPL to create a network of successful entrepreneurs, corporate executives, and senior professionals who want to play an active role in contributing towards the knowledge building, mentoring and development of the future talent pool of India. Today, there are over 25 IEDN members who are part of the network.

This network of industry professionals have comprehensive knowledge about their respective industry, hiring needs, skill gaps and understanding about the Industry’s future potential and realities. IEDN members partner with KESPL to engage with its flagship product, The Bridge Program. The charter IEDN membership is by invitation only, and subject to the due process prescribed by the KESPL-IEDN regulations and bylaws. The membership is free for both organizations and individuals, as the objective is to engage as many supporters as possible in this nation building activity of solving the issue of urban unemployment.


Benefits to the Social Enterprise


Sustainability and Quality

IEDN members participate in at least 2 Bridge Sessions conducted in KESPL partner educational institutions every year. This ensures that parts of the resource requirements for the program are fulfilled and that the program is able to maintain the quality in terms of workshops in different schools. IEDN members provide support in mentoring, knowledge building and development of the unemployed youth of India in their desired capacity.


Fulfilling its mandate

Any program implemented by KEPSL can only be successful if the cycle is closed and the beneficiaries are able to actually obtain employment and that mandate is fulfilled by its partnership with IEDN.IEDN members also provide any opportunities if available for internship, permanent posting and other experience building programs to support worthy and talented students.


Increased Visibility

Partnering with an association of highly valued and respected corporates also enables KEPSL to build its brand and gain greater visibility for the work the organization is involved in.


Benefits to the Corporate Partners

Access to Talent Pool

The corporate partners have easy access to  the Future Talent Networks (FTN) present in KESPL’s various partner Universities/Colleges. Even more importantly, they have access to a pool of trained referred potential hires.  Freedom to promote products, services, organizations and opportunities in the FTNs of KESPL’s various partner Universities/Colleges.


Access to High Quality Networks

As members of IEDN, corporates have  access to the IEDN network of high net-worth individuals from various industries and all of KESPL’s networking events. This also in turn enables these corporates to potential build other partnerships and therefore explore new territories and build in scale.


Ability to ensure social impact

All of the corporate organizations within the IEDN network are able to directly work with young people from low income communities and  impact their lives through creating career awareness. This therefore enables them to play their part in eradicating urban unemployment and building India’s future talent pool.



The partnership between Kaarmic Education Services and IEDN is an extremely unique one since it is an example of collaboration between a social enterprise and a network of individuals and corporates. This partnership is also exemplary of a mutually beneficial alliance since both parties are gaining from each others’ network. Apart from fulfilling CSR mandates through engaging with young people from low income communities and there by playing a part in reducing urban unemployment, the network is also  able to tap into the pool for recruitment purposes, thereby increasing their stake and creating incentives for them as well.



[i] Tilak, B.G.J. (2010). Tangible targets at school. The Hindu. 11th February 2010. [online] Available at : < http://www.hindu.com/2010/02/11/stories/2010021150390800.htm>

[ii] Times of India (2012). Gross Enrolment at nearly 19% shows survey. Times of India. 29th September 2012. New Delhi. [online] Available at :< http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2012-09-29/news/34163129_1_ger-sc-students-total-student-enrollment>

[iii] Chhapia, H. (2012) Indian students rank 2nd last in global test – The Times of India. [online] Available at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/education/news/Indian-students-rank-2nd-last-in-global-test/articleshow/11492508.cms