‘FarRishta’ – the first-ever digital volunteering initiative – reaches out to citizens and children amidst COVID 19
~Tata Steel Foundation enables employees to be social, from a distance~
In an attempt to engage with members from vulnerable pockets in the community during the lockdown period, Tata Steel Foundation has launched FarRishta – an initiative where volunteering avenues through the digital space have been opened up for Tata Steel employees.
Rupali Majhi, an eight-year old student from the all-girls residential camp school at Pipla under Masti Ki Pathshala, was elated while remaining engaged in interactive sessions with volunteer. It helped her cope up during these times.
Rupali was engaged in an interesting session conducted by Mr Pallav Garg, Head, Business Performance Enhancement (Operations), Tata Steel, at her school.
Under FarRishta, the employees are regularly conducting sessions on a variety of topics for the students at its residential bridge schools, old age homes, HIV positive children who need the extra care and attention as they are confined to their homes, with nearly no visitors.
FarRishta began on March 26 and has, since then, reached out to 1294 people involving more than 120 employees, clocking 125 hours of volunteering in the process, till date.
Sonia Munda attended a session conducted by Mr M.C Thomas, Executive-in-Charge, (FAMD), Tata Steel on steel and iron making.
"I had heard about mines back in the village. I used to wonder what mines are until Thomas Sir told us about it. He explained it so beautifully that I could visualize the mining and excavation process, said Sonia.
The initiatives have received enthusiastic response and has prompted Tata Steel Foundation to increase the engagement initiatives as well as locations two to the present nine engagements across Jamshedpur, Delhi, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Vishakhapatnam, Mumbai and Kolkata, in partnership with 14 centres.
Apart from taking online sessions, a few have walked the extra mile to help communities in their unique possible ways. Mr Amit Ranjan, CSM South-Chennai, Tata Steel, while taking a session with the nursing students at the Narayana Hrudyalaya Hospital, Bengaluru, realised that they were unable to recharge their mobile phones due to lack of money. Realizing the gravity of the problem, he offered to do a month's recharge on the cell phones of all 18 students.
Aditya Sarda and Shivam Rai, from the operation teams connected with 30 girls at the camp schools at Pipla. They explained basic scientific practices to the students.
“The girls are really smart. They came forward willingly to express their opinions with us. In fact, towards the end of the session they kept us scratching our heads for answers while they were unstoppable with their genuine questions”, admits Aditya.
These apart, fun work-out sessions, science classes, elocution competitions, talks on nutrition and conversations on spirituality, to name a few are among the plethora of engagements currently happening under FarRishta.
Tata Steel stands in solidarity with its communities at this time of unprecedented duress, and hopes to reach out meaningfully to its communities as and how the situation emerges.
About Tata Steel
Tata Steel group is among the top global steel companies with an annual crude steel capacity of 33 million tonnes per annum (MnTPA). It is one of the world's most geographically-diversified steel producers, with operations and commercial presence across the world. The group (excluding SEA operations) recorded a consolidated turnover of US $22.67 billion in the financial year ending March 31, 2019. In 2018, Tata Steel acquired Bhushan Steel Ltd (now renamed as Tata Steel BSL Ltd).
A Great Place to Work-Certified organisation, Tata Steel Ltd., together with its subsidiaries, associates and joint ventures, is spread across five continents with an employee base of over 65,000.
Tata Steel retained the ‘Global Steel Industry Leader’ position in the DJSI 2018. The Company has been recognised as the Climate Disclosure Leader in ‘Steel category’ by CDP (2017). Besides being a member of the World Steel Climate Action Programme, Tata Steel has won several awards including the Lighthouse recognition for its Kalinganagar Plant – a first in India, Prime Minister’s Trophy for the best performing integrated steel plant for 2016-17, ‘GreenPro’ certification for products (Tata Pravesh Steel Doors, Tata Structura, Tata Pipes) by CII, Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) status (Tier 2) by the Directorate of International Customs (Ministry of Finance, Govt. of India), ‘Corporate Strategy Award’ by Mint (2018), Golden Peacock Award for Risk Management (2018) and Best Risk Management Framework & Systems Award (2019) by CNBC TV18. The Company also received the ‘Most Ethical Company’ award from Ethisphere Institute for the eight time (2019), Steel Sustainability Champion (2018) by the World Steel Association, Dun & Bradstreet Corporate Awards (2019), Golden Peacock HR Excellence Award by Institute of Directors (2018), ‘Best Companies To Work For’ recognition by Business Today, 'Asia's Best Integrated Report' award by the Asia Sustainability Reporting Awards (2017), among several others.
Last year, the Company launched a corporate brand campaign #WeAlsoMakeTomorrow..
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Chief, Corporate Communications-India & SEA