Honda Two Wheelers Integrating CSR In Its Culture
The inclusion of CSR is an attempt by the government to engage the businesses with the national development agenda. We take a peek into the CSR initiatives of Honda Two Wheelers in Gurgaon.
India is the first country in the world to make Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) mandatory, following an amendment to The Company Act, 2013 in April 2014. It does not just stand for charity or philanthropic activities, but holds much deeper value. CSR initiatives should ideally target long-standing issues and deliver long-term solutions!
It has been 18 years since Honda 2Wheelers made India and specifically Manesar, Haryana, its home. Over the years drawing actively from the company’s global vision and mandate of community care, Honda 2Wheelers spends over two per cent on its CSR budget. The CSR team operates under the dynamic leadership of visionary Harbhajan Singh, Director-General & Corporate Affairs, from their corporate office at Golf Course Extension Road. “As a responsibility towards the society in Honda, we streamline our investments around CSR projects with the sustainable development goals and activities which brings about a behavioural change.’’
Honda 2Wheelers key CSR mandates include Road Safety, Environment, Women Empowerment, Rural Development and Health & Education for the underprivileged. Apart from that, the company also supports people with disabilities. The company sponsored Deepa Malik, the Paralympic athlete in essential expenses like training material, including new wheelchair, physiotherapist and nutritionist fees and coaching for her Asian Para Games wherein she won a silver medal and made our country proud.
Social Development with Sustainability
“Our focus on social development also includes the area across our plant locations. After due diligence, we like to invest our money, time and the energy in projects which are community-centric and converge with the larger government efforts aimed at ensuring holistic development. We closely follow our mission statement, ‘Honda strives to be a Company that Society wants to exist,’ shares Harbhajan Singh who recently was felicitated with the Kalam Social Impact Award.
Haryana Vision Zero is Honda’s flagship engagement in partnership with Haryana Government, WRI India and NASSCOM Foundation across ten districts to reduce road accident-related fatalities on main highways. The programme has helped in developing a case for evidence-based action using black spot identification, road safety, improved signage, FIR analysis and more.
Elaborating on the focus of the company on road safety mechanisms, Sharad Pradhan Divisional Head – CSR & Government Relations enthusiastically shares, “To curb speeding vehicles, Honda 2Wheelers India has provided a fleet of fully equipped interceptors to Rajasthan Police. With a 360-degree camera mounted on top and visual identification for up to 500 metres, the Interceptor was conceived to fulfil various roles-traffic law enforcement, traffic education, first aid & rescue, road & infrastructure surveys, deterrent and road safety audits. With our support and equipment Rajasthan Police were able to touch upon lives of more than 2000 people in one month.”
Additionally, Traffic Assistance Booths have been set up across National Highways 2 and 8 with fully equipped motorcycles with public announcements systems, sirens, flash lights and first aid boxes. Reflective jackets for traffic police guards have also been provided to assist the police in monitoring traffic.
A Generation Change by Empowering Women
The company has very recently launched women empowering skill development training programme ‘Sapno Ki Udaan.’ Under this initiative, the company targets to provide 100 per cent scholarships to 20 female aspirants to become a commercial pilot. The project is close to the heart of Harbhajan Singh. He says, “The company has earmarked an amount of approximately 80 lakh per candidate for the programme. The training of the candidates will begin by October after selection of the candidates. We are engaging with the flying clubs across India for their training tie-up and also engaging with public and private airline players for placement support.’’ It is the company’s biggest CSR project, spread across the states of Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat & Tamil Naidu.
Apart from being an integral support system to Raahgiri in Gurgaon since the days of the inception of the concept and Haryana Vision Zero, Honda also supports marathons for safe driving and women empowerment.
To help the youngsters from North East the company has joined hands with SSDH in Sikanderpur to sponsor training of youth and prepare them for placements in the hospitality industry.
Under women empowerment focus, the company facilitated the training of security guards to women coming from an underprivileged background in Gurgaon and its nearby places and made arrangements for their placement also.
There is no substitute for improved and effective policing in times when the crime graph appears overwhelming. Haryana was ranked fourth in 2016 National Crime Records Bureau on reported incidences of rape, abduction, kidnapping and murder. In the mission to make roads safer for city dwellers, Honda as a responsibility took to making highways safer by joining hands with Haryana Police department to evolve a community policing initiative which would lend wheels to beat officers and increase their responsiveness in Gurgaon under ‘Prahry’ project of the company.
Besides the dedicated long term projects, Honda 2Wheelers supports community awareness programmes in Gurgaon. The campaign to raise awareness for Thalassemia and Alzheimer’s got much appreciation from the city dwellers.
“We have aligned our Vision 2030 to the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The four pillars of our CSR thematic areas include – Road Safety, Environment, Education, Health, and Rural Development and are aligned to the 17 goals that define global priorities to eradicate poverty, fight inequalities and tackle climate change.” – Harbhajan Singh
This article was first published in the print version of SUBURB August 2019 issue.