The fourth consecutive edition of the SABERA Awards – which stands for Social and Business Enterprise Responsible Awards – culminated in a virtual awards ceremony on December 9, 2021, putting in the forefront Indian companies, individuals and institutions who consistently put ‘Purpose Beyond Profit’.
Award winners include Dabur India (in the environment and consumption category); WinPE Development Forum (for gender diversity in investing); and Hindustan Unilever (in the health and wellbeing category), among many others.
Renu Sud Karnad, managing director of HDFC Bank Ltd., chaired the robust jury of noted personalities who were also present through the event including Dr Bhaskar Chatterjee (IAS), popularly known as the father of CSR in India; Uday Varma (IAS), former secretary, Ministry of I&B and MSME; Suhela Khan, country program manager, WeEmpower Asia, UN Women; Ananta Raghuvanshi, founder director, National Real Estate Development Council; Kamal Bali, president and managing director, Volvo Group India; Richard Rekhy, board, KPMG Dubai; Shaili Chopra, founder, SheThePeople.TV; Mathew Cherian, chair, CARE India; and Geeta Goel, country director, Michael & Susan Dell Foundation.
eShe is proud to be e-magazine partner for the SABERA Awards.
The annual event attracted nationwide participation by the country’s biggest corporates, most impactful non-profits and inspiring individuals. The awards acknowledged stories of impact and development aligned with UN’s 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) and the Environment Social and Governance (ESG) Principles.
“A task of highlighting ‘good’ when the trend is to cash in on sensationalism is a challenge that we at SABERA have taken head-on,” said Suparnaa Chadda, founder-curator of SABERA.
There were over 80 entries for three main categories acknowledging SDG and ESG-aligned initiatives, entities and individuals. Two research-based nominations in Responsible Business and Promising Responsible Business were also acknowledged among others. A total of 46 trophies have been awarded including eight Jury Commendations.
The occasion was graced by guest of honour, Dr Bibek Debroy, chairperson of the Economic Advisory Council to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has been a supporter of SABERA since inception in 2018. In his address he stated, “To my mind what SABERA has been trying to do is not very different from what the Prime Minister has done by making the Padma awards people-centric.”
Organised by the Simply Suparnaa © Media Network, a UN Women 2021 Awardee, the event featured keynote speakers Dr Prakash Amte and Dr Mandakini Amte, the son and daughter-in-law of social reformer Baba Amte. The couple left the audience inspired, sharing their lifetime commitment of being in service to the indigenous tribes of the country, exemplifying the theme of ‘Purpose Beyond Profit’.
In a session moderated by Aekta Kapoor, founder of eShe, Dr Prakash Amte shared, “Exposure to development work leaves a lasting impact on the subconscious mind and encourages individuals to work towards the larger good of society. Especially for the youth, such exposure can help lead a more fulfilling life beyond material pursuits.”
SABERA recognised businesses as well as the third-sector champions including NGOs and individuals. Winners of the Responsible Business category included Bharat Aluminium Company Ltd., Maruti Suzuki India Ltd., SBI General Insurance Ltd., Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers Ltd., and Bharat Petroleum Company Limited among others.
On receiving the trophy for Swasthya & Kalyan for their Covid-19 outreach, Sanjiv Mehta, chair, HUL, shared, “This award is indeed a recognition of the many people who have passionately worked towards making a positive difference to the society and also reaffirms our belief that what is GOOD for India is GOOD for Hindustan Unilever.”
Dr Sunil Shroff, founder of MOHAN foundation who received the Lifetime Achievement trophy, dedicated the award to all the organ donors of the country who saved thousands of lives and hoped that the award inspires many others to support the noble cause of organ donation.
Exemplifying SABERA’s intent to catalyse ‘good’ and leave no one behind, the awards this year too were anchored by a bright young girl from a remote village of India. Fifteen-year-old Parvati Shah, one of three siblings, lost her mother at the age of five when severe floods destroyed her village in Uttarkashi.
“Many times, we had to sleep on empty stomachs and we could do nothing about it,” shared Parvati, who is under the shelter of Purukal Youth Development Society now and is one of their brightest students. Parvati’s dream is to become a doctor and work in rural areas so that no mother’s life is lost due to lack of medical facilities.