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Engagement

Henkel and its employees and retirees provide targeted help all over the world. Henkel sponsors MIT projects worldwide, provides emergency aid, and carries out or fosters projects either as a corporation or through its brands. Henkel in India also has two key CSR programs, Edu-care and Lighting Lives, as mandated by Section 135(1) of Companies Act 2013.

Read more about how we put our commitment to social engagement into practice in India.

Empowering mentally challenged children

Imparting education and skills to mentally challenged children, to make them independent.

Suryoday School was started to provide education to mentally challenged children at Nalasopara, a suburb of Mumbai. Currently, there is no school in this area, which caters to such children. The objective of this school is to make these children independent, confident and happy. The vision of the school is also to provide them with vocational training so that they are employable after they complete education from school. The school has about 37 children, who are imparted training in Occupational and Music therapies as well.

With the support of MIT, we were able to provide for equipment required for occupational therapy, musical instruments for music therapy, and home science equipment to teach students to cook. We were also able to acquire good tables and desks, as well as writing boards for the children. 

Henkel Lighting Lives

Driven by our commitment for sustainability and the understanding that we can make a perceptible impact on the lives of rural communities who are faced with socio-economic challenges due to lack of basic access to electricity, Henkel in India embraced a rural solar electrification initiative called Henkel Lighting Lives.

Now, children at Guraad enjoy going to school.

We joined hands with United Way Mumbai, a non-profit organization, to identify villages close to our head office (for the pilot phase), which are either off-grid or those with erratic power supply owing to load shedding of up to 12 hours. Based on a need assessment study done by the NGO, we decided to bridge the electrification gap of two schools and some households at three identified tribal villages classified as backward on multiple indicators such as health, education and income levels. We appointed E-Hands Energy, an organization engaged in the business of manufacturing and distribution of renewable energy systems based on solar and wind power, to install solar grids at these locations.

The solar electrification project has been successfully completed at the identified locations—schools at Guraad and Zari, and households at Kochesapada. The solar grids have been benefitting about 30 households comprising 150 villagers, and over 1600 school students. The project has received an overwhelming response from the villagers and school authorities at the implemented locations. A primary school teacher said, “The solar panels are enabling our children to study …. They no longer face discomfort during their studies.”

At Kochesapada, the installation experienced some challenges during the initial phase, as the school authorities did not want to store batteries of the solar grid within their premises. In order to overcome this challenge, a group of villagers stepped forward and took up the responsibility of constructing a small area adjacent to the school to store the batteries. Such gestures encouraged community participation and ownership among the villagers and school authorities. Orientation meetings were conducted for the beneficiaries to explain the dos and don’ts, safe keeping of batteries and the way to use the solar set up judiciously.

Suraj Varma from Henkel’s Mumbai office, who visited the locations said, “It was an enriching experience. I was touched by the impact Henkel was making to the lives of students and villagers. I was encouraged by the community participation and the sense of ownership among the beneficiaries, which I believe will lead to sustainable use of solar panels”