In conversation with Mr. Nixon Joseph, President- COO, SBI Foundation.
In conversation with Mr. Nixon Joseph, President- COO, SBI Foundation.

By auther pic. CSRBOX

February 4, 2019

Nixon, President & Chief Operating Officer, SBI Foundation, is a post graduate in English Language and Literature and joined State Bank of India in 1985 as probationary officer. As a career Banker, he has extensive  experience in various facets of banking like Corporate Credit, Retail Operations, International Banking etc. and has worked all over India including Northeast. He is a Certified Associate of India Institute of Bankers, Certified Credit Professional, Certified Banking Compliance Professional and Certified Information Systems Banker.


Describing SBI Foundation’s Flagship initiative, Mr. Joseph says that the foundation has three flagship programs-


1.     SBI Youth For India Fellowship:

The program selects 100 youth every year and allots them to the partner NGOs to work on projects on rural development. Highly educated youth from urban areas are selected and are oriented in such a way that by the end of 13-months fellowship, the fellows develop a liking towards working in the rural sector. Out of 100 youth selected yearly, almost 60% continue their work in the development sector.


It’s a highly competitive fellowship where over 7000 youth apply and only 550 youth are shortlisted for the interviews and 100 are selected for the fellowship.


2.     SBI Centre of Excellence for Persons with Disability:

Under this initiative, the Foundation tries to institutionalize best practices SBI follows in respect to disabled persons into other nationalized banks or institutions. People with Disabilities are provided with training, and it is made sure that they absorb into mainstream, and are gainfully employed and engaged, contribute maximum to the institution.


3.     SBI Graam Seva:

SBI Graam Seva focuses on Holistic Development of Villages. The scheme is implemented in 10 Gram Panchayats comprising of 50 villages. It is made sure that the community comes forward with their idea of development and SBI partners with them give these ideas a shape. The Holistic development includes- Education, Health, Environment, Water, Livelihood etc. It’s a three-year intervention. After the completion of three years, the foundation makes sure that the initiatives undertaken are sustainable in nature and are carried forward by the community.


Talking about engaging the youth in CSR ecosystem, Mr. Joseph states, ‘SBI Youth for India Fellowship is a matter of pride for both SBI Foundation and SBI. The fellowship involves highly educated youth from urban areas. The foundation partners with 7 NGOs for the program. The beauty of the fellowship is that no project is thrust upon the fellows. The fellows are asked to meet the stakeholders at the village, list out the areas in which intervention is required and pick an area to work on. They work on the picked area, implement the program, launch it on a pilot base and once successful; upscale it’.


Commenting on effective implementation of CSR activities, Mr. Nixon suggests that it is to be done with great passion and vision, and not just for the sake of ticking the box of CSR activities performed as per Government rules. The impact assessment of the project, the follow through is needed. In order to achieve high impacts, 4-5 corporate should come to gather to implement projects in certain areas instead of putting disbursed and scattered efforts.


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