Nov. 20th, 2015

The Asian Venture Philanthropy Network (AVPN) in partnership with Standard Chartered hosted a workshop for Standard Chartered’s Private Bank clients designed to educate, empower and enable individuals and their families along their giving journeys. This workshop was the first in a series of workshops that AVPN is planning to roll out together with Standard Chartered on a global basis.

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The workshop began with an introduction to venture philanthropy, sharing of key data on the India Philanthropy landscape, how to get engaged in more strategic giving and lead up to an experience sharing by a panel of guest speakers. The panel was moderated by Andrew Muirhead, AVPN Board member and included AVPN member, Mr. Sundar Mahalingam, Chief Strategy Officer of the Shiv Nadar Foundation; Mr. Vijay Chadda, CEO of the Bharti Foundation; Mr. Shyam Beriwala, Chairman of Shyam Steel Industries Ltd. and Mr. SK Jindal, Chairman of the Jindal Group of Companies.

The workshop was very well attended and the audience included in most cases two family generations. The panel discussions were very lively and there were also many questions from the audience. One of the key messages that came out from the workshop included the fact that running a philanthropic organization is just as difficult and in some ways even more complicated than running a business given that the issues and problems that are being tackled are very complex and the fact that there is a strong emphasis on creating social impact.

Another topic of interest among the audience was how to better engage the next generation and whether there is an ideal age to start engaging the next generation. The panellists suggested to start involving the next gen as early as possible and give them the opportunity to take ownership and participate in the decision process to get them engaged.

There was a great interest in the audience to give more and give better but the main challenge funders are faced with is not knowing which organization to trust and how to track the impact. There are approximately 3 million non-profits in India, but less than 1% of them have a proper governance structure and accountability systems in place. There is a real need to build up the capacity of the non-profit sector in India which is why funders should be looking at more than just supporting programs but also support the capacity building of the organization itself in an effort to build a better ecosystem.

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