“Whatever you earn, part of it should go to the company,” said Mr. Anil Agarwal, Founder and Chairman of Vedanta Resources Limited. With this conviction, the billionaire of the first generation has pledged 75% of his fortune to philanthropy, since 2014.
Anil Agarwal and his family were ranked fifth in the EdelGive Hurun India Philanthropy List 2020 for their commitment to philanthropy. The family donated INR 215 crore to social welfare initiatives in the past fiscal year. Spending was focused on causes such as computer education and skills, vocational training, empowerment of women and children, and community well-being. In July 2021, the metal tycoon pledged to spend 5,000 crore rupees for the socio-economic development of the country over the next five years. This investment will focus on the empowerment of women, early childhood care, the promotion of grassroots sports and the establishment of a veterinary care project.
Commenting on the engagement, Mr. Agarwal said: “The goal is to transform our communities.” The Anil Agarwal Foundation also launched a program, called Swasth Gaon Abhiyaan, to provide health services in 1,000 villages. “Our focus is on ‘rebuilding better’ to collaborate and ensure social recovery, which is supported by the required health infrastructure,” Agarwal said.
1. Anil Agarwal Foundation
The Anil Agarwal Foundation is the umbrella entity for Vedanta’s community and social initiatives. It is also the main platform through the Agarwal family that conducts its philanthropic initiatives.
The Foundation’s areas of intervention are health, the development of women and children, animal welfare projects and sports initiatives. The Anil Agarwal Foundation aims to empower communities, transform lives and facilitate nation building through sustainable and inclusive growth.
The Anil Agarwal Foundation has partnered with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 2, which aims to end all forms of hunger and malnutrition by 2030. Under the Foundation Anil Agarwal, Nand Ghars remains the flagship project for women and child development that transforms the lives of 7 crore children and 2 crore women by providing them with holistic development opportunities.
2. Nand Ghar project
Mr. Anil Agarwal’s vision is: “No child in India should remain undernourished and be deprived of basic amenities, health education and nutrition”. “Let’s make India a nation free from malnourished children,” he said. In the same vein, he wants to change the infant mortality rate in India and he says “I will not be at peace until every child in this country has these basic necessities”.
With this vision in mind, the Nandghar Project was launched as the flagship project of the Anil Agarwal Foundation. The objective of the project is to promote education, the empowerment of women and the eradication of child malnutrition.
Nand Ghars is dedicated to helping children and women in rural India by transforming traditional aanganwadis into fully equipped state-of-the-art structures that create an enabling environment for early childhood development that includes essential elements for cognitive, social and developmental development. emotional. Managed in collaboration with the Ministry of Women and Children Development (MoWCD), Nand Ghars ensures that rural India is not left behind in the country’s march towards progress.
They have some key features like smart TVs for e-learning, 24/7 backup power, earthquake resistant structures, toilets, water purifiers, solar panels and vegetable gardens. which make them model resource centers for the community. In addition to providing nutritious meals for women and children, the Nand Ghars provide take-home rations for children and pregnant and breastfeeding women. Primary health care services are also provided here through mobile vans while women are empowered through skills, credit links and business development.
Today there are over 2300 Nand Ghars running in 11 states of India. The foundation pledged to build 4000 of these Nandghars across the country.
3. Vedanta University
The Anil Agarwal Foundation has pledged $ 1 billion to establish a large university in the Indian state of Orissa. The university is a private, multidisciplinary and coeducational university project to be initiated by Anil Agarwal of Vedanta Resources Company near the Puri-Konark Highway in Odisha, India. The proposal was made in the hope that the institution will do for India what Stanford University did for Silicon Valley in California. Commenting on the initiative, Mr. Agarwal said, “The education system in the United States is fabulous, and it is my dream that we are creating educational cities in India. For my part, I have already pledged $ 1 billion for a major university. It will be a research university and I am ready to invest more money if necessary. Look around India, there is so much we can do. In the future, I hope to have an educational city where we can offer medical, arts and technical research students under one roof.
4. Svasth Gaon Abhiyaan
Swasth Gaon Abhiyaan is a latest initiative announced by the Agarwal family with dedicated spending of Rs 5,000 crore for the next five years. ‘Swasth Gaon Abhiyaan’ will be a mega project that will enhance ‘community immunity’ to ensure minimal impact from Covid, as part of their overall goal of providing social development and infrastructure as an essential service to the nation . In addition, it will also improve employment opportunities, retrain the youth and bring the stability and progress which are essential for India’s economic growth.
Anil Agarwal said, “We aim to strengthen our efforts and facilitate sustainable and inclusive growth, which is the need of the hour to protect and provide for our communities. The Swasth Gaon Abhiyaan initiative is the first step on our journey to deliver end-to-end health solutions across the rural landscape spanning 1,000 villages. This program will also complement Vedanta’s flagship project, Nand Ghar, which aims to reach 7 million children and 2 million women.
He added: “Our focus is on ‘rebuilding better’ to collaborate and ensure social recovery that is supported by the required health infrastructure.”
Under the flagship “Swasth Gaon Abhiyaan” initiative, the Anil Agarwal Foundation plans to support and strengthen health services in 1,000 villages in 24 districts and 12 states nationwide, affecting more than two million lives. The initiative will follow a model of district-level interventions, such as oxygen production plants, telemedicine services, modernization of medical and diagnostic infrastructure, and mobile medical vans / ambulances. The pool of interventions will be planned according to specific needs and the availability of specialist doctors in the various district hospitals in order to make the establishment functional.
Major investments will be made under the ‘Swasth Gaon Abhiyaan’ to mitigate the impact of Covid-19, working with state governments / districts to provide a safety net to communities and invest in health services. Efforts are being made to promote immunization through special medical and wellness camps organized in remote areas. Medical equipment is also provided in district hospitals and health care centers to ensure quality treatment.
Anil Agarwal, as a first generation billionaire, had a very humble start to life in the suburb of Patna where he spent his childhood. It has a lot to do with his charitable activities – he admits himself: “I believe my roots have helped me become who I am today. Giving is therefore natural and it comes naturally. I believe when we help someone, someone else always steps in and pushes them forward and it becomes a chain reaction. With his unique vision of philanthropy, he is poised to leave a mark in the socio-economic development of India.