Bhubaneswar: HCL Foundation, the CSR arm of HCL Technologies, hosted the HCL Grant Symposium of the sixth edition of HCL Grant at the KIMS Auditorium, Campus 5, Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS), here on Saturday.

The day-long event was attended by eminent personalities Aurobindo Behera, Former Secretary in Government of Odisha for Disaster Management, Forest & Environment, Rural Development.  PK Jena, additional chief secretary and MD Odisha Disaster Management Authority, a Former UNDP Asst Country Representative, Sourav Bhattacharjee, Nutrition Specialist, UNICEF Odisha Field Office, former IFS officer Jitasatru Mohanty , Anurag Das, director, academics,KISS and Robin Sarkar, project director, Shiksha Initiative, Shiv Nadar Foundation.

The event was aimed at providing training to non-government organizations in and around and Odisha was the second of a series of symposiums which HCL Foundation plans to organize across India. The symposiums will be held in other locations namely – Pondicherry, Jaipur/Kanpur, Pune, Bhopal, Kolkata, Guwahati, Bangalore and Delhi.

As a part of CSR for Nation Building symposium, panel discussions and open discussion were conducted with local NGO representatives and civil society experts on themes such as evolving compliances in CSR and NGO data and figure on current CSR and NGO expectations, HCL Grant Overview, Eligibility criteria and Selection Process and Policy frameworks (Environment, Health and Education).

About 115 NGOs with 169 delegates from across Odisha attended and participated in a panel discussion. 

There was a session on ‘Power of Fifth Estate’ in which recipients of HCL Grant shared their experiences of how HCL Grant helped them bring about the desired impact. In the last four editions of the HCL Grant, 625 registrations have been received from Odisha. This was the fifth consecutive year that HCL Foundation conducted the symposium in Odisha.

HCL Grant will be awarded in the categories of education, health and environment, with a commitment of ₹ 5 Crore for a five-year project in each category. The Grant would also reward two other finalists with ₹ 25 lakhs for a 1-year project. The total fund committed for the sixth edition of HCL Grant is ₹16.5 Crores.

HCL Grant has seen a significant increase in the number of registrations coming in, from the first edition in 2016 to the fifth edition which concluded in 16,365 NGO registrations from Pan India. In the 2019-20 edition, over 5000+ registrations were seen, of which, 27% registrations were unique NGOs. The idea of HCL Grant is not only to recognize the work of NGOs contributing to the nation’s growth and development but also to stay engaged with them to achieve the desired impact.