Giving Compass' Take:

• Anita Kumar, writing for India Development Review, describes the CSR response to COVID-19 in India and explores the current funding landscape. 

• How is the funding response to the crisis different in India compared to the U.S.?

• Learn more about the impact of COVID-19 on rural India.   

The CSR community has been quick to respond, with most committees and boards working overtime to speed up internal processes and get approvals for spends and additional budgets. In this article, we address some of the questions that companies frequently ask us.

  1. How is the CSR community responding to COVID-19? We have analysed a total of 75 resource announcements for tackling the COVID-19 crisis totalling to a commitment of more than INR 4,134 crores 2 from various CSR units, corporate foundations, and Public Sector Units (PSUs), including the Tata Trusts, L&T, Reliance Industries, ITC, Hero Group, SBI, Vedanta, and Infosys, among others.  Some corporates have come forward to support innovation and entrepreneurship initiatives (Pernod Ricard India and Marico), which can serve as a much-needed catalyst for med-tech entrepreneurs to ramp up testing and production of COVID-19-related products.
  2. How do I maximise impact with my funding in the current situation? How do I decide between different options of funding?
    In times of crisis it is critical to direct the right kind of resources to the right people, at the right time and place, and if possible, in the right quantities. Asks from nonprofits and other organisations working towards the COVID-19 response have broadly been split into immediate relief on the healthcare and essential services side (food and shelter), and ongoing livelihoods support (urban and rural), social protection of vulnerable groups, skilling and education, research and development, and mental health counselling.
  3. Should I divert funding from my current programmes, especially if work is stalled due to the lockdown? Diverting funding from current programmes poses a risk not just for the nonprofit and their staff, but also for the communities they serve. In some cases, programmes may be delayed by a few months; this might free up some resources in the current quarter for the COVID-19 response, but it’s important to ensure continued support for the organisations’ operating costs during this time.

Read the full article about data and insights by Anita Kumar at India Development Review.