INTERVIEW

In conversation with Rupaak Kumarr, CSR Times, Dr.Payal Kanodia, Trustee, M3M Foundation shared her vision, journey and activities conducted during COVID-19  

What is the vision and purpose of the M3M Foundation?

M3M Foundation is the philanthropic arm of M3M Group. It aims to empower the vulnerable section of the society, including the marginalized, differently-abled, women and children, to fulfil the dream of holistic, equitable, inclusive and sustainable development in India. The Foundation envisions growth and development for all through support to government initiatives and taking proactive steps in the developmental regime. It is determined to usher development across all sections of the society by undertaking projects that ensure holistic growth. The Foundation is actively working in areas such as health, education, disaster management and socio-economic development to transform the rural lifestyle.

How has the journey been so far?

The journey has been indeed memorable and gratifying. M3M Foundation launched the iMpower programme in collaboration with Aide et Action. This initiative has impacted over 300 families of construction workers.

Some of our key initiatives are VrikshArpan, a relief drive for victims of Cyclone Fani in Odisha, as well as for Bihar flood victims. The Fani relief drive was conducted in association with Meals of Happiness wherein we distributed relief packages including clothes for men, women and children, groceries, rice, spices, pulses, medical kits and etc.  More than 700 families were benefited from the drive.

As a part of the initiative called Kartavya, M3M Foundation, in collaboration with Rise Always Welfare Society (RAWS), facilitated the reconstruction and redevelopment of houses in Bihar. 

VrikshArpan is an initiative to plant 10000 trees over the next three years, an initiative will be conducted in collaboration with the forest departments of various state government and non-governmental organizations. Besides addressing environmental concerns, the initiative will also generate employment, make villages sustainable and boost the local economy. Dept of education, Haryana government has inked a MoU with M3M Foundation to facilitate online preparation, training and mentoring of students preparing for government jobs. The objective of the MoU is to build and strengthen the partnership between both institutions to enable students to access quality preparation for entrance examinations of government jobs.

What were the activities conducted by the Foundation during Covid-19?

The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented time that brought untold hardships to the marginalized section of society. Amid the lockdown, lakhs of migrant workers were stranded across the nation due to the suspension of transportation. At this critical juncture, the M3M Foundation emerged as their formidable support system.  We were able to retain more than 90% of labourers at Gurugram. 

M3M Foundation also launched ‘Kartavya’- a food and nutrition programme wherein we supported approximately 2 lakh people, including 8000 migrant workers along with their families at M3M worksites. In collaboration with Iskon, M3M Foundation provided lunch to all the construction workers at all M3M sites. Fumigation and sanitization of the camps were also undertaken. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the significance of sustainability. M3M Foundation has embarked on a unique environmental initiative to plant one million trees across India in the next three years. The ‘VrikshArpan initiative is being implemented in collaboration with the forest departments of various state governments and non-governmental organizations. Amid the 74th Independence Day celebrations, M3M Foundation undertook a 15 day-long ‘Freedom from Hunger’ campaign to provide cooked meals to 125 underprivileged children in East Delhi. 

How is M3M Foundation contributing to education?

As a responsible organization, M3M Foundation envisions to facilitate equitable and sustainable growth of India through educational, material and psychological interventions and continuous mentoring. Education is an enabler to empowering individuals as well as ensuring the economic development of the country.

The government of Haryana has inked an MoU with M3M Foundation to facilitate online preparation, training and mentoring of students preparing for government jobs. The objective of the MoU is to build and strengthen the partnership between both institutions to enable students to access quality preparation for entrance examinations of government jobs. The MoU aligns with the vision of the Haryana government to link one lakh candidates to government jobs within and outside the state in the next two years.

M3M Foundation has also launched the SAAKSHAR initiative to support the students hailing from marginalized sections of society by providing them scholarships. As a part of iMpower, around 500 children are being offered after-school support for their better academic performance at construction sites of Delhi-NCR. We also plan to launch Smart Classrooms for these children to make them digitally empowered.