The spirit of philanthropy is alive, well and in able hands
The Centre for Advancement of Philanthropy (CAP), one of India’s most credible and comprehensive sources for legal advice and resources related to the non-profit sector recently hosted a one-day conference in Mumbai on the sector’s compliance requirements. ‘Compliance Complete’, a thinktank on holistic compliance was attended by representatives from over 70 large and small NGOs and corporate foundations that are engaged in corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives.
From representatives of the Akanksha Foundation, Bridgespan and the Ambuja Cement Foundation to KEM Hospitals Pune. They were all there to hear and discuss more about their issues of interest from some of the brightest and most engaged minds in the sector. The Chief Editor of Parsiana, Jehangir Patel also attended the conference and was an active and engaged participant throughout.
Held in Mumbai at Sunville Pavilion, Worli on April 16, the event was an enriching and empowering experience for participants, facilitators and panelists alike. Over the course of six thought-provoking and lively sessions, almost every issue and challenge related to the compliance requirements of NGOs, charities, trusts and corporate-NGO partnerships was discussed and debated in a healthy and candid atmosphere.
From the burdens and boons of being financially and legally compliant, the importance of paying heed to finding the right fit in NGO-corporate partnerships and also to one’s HR requirements, to the challenges and dilemmas presented by fundraising in the current scenario, and the role of board governance in the growth and evolution of an NGO, all these issues were tackled head-on by key stakeholders in the sector, whose wealth of experience and knowledge was reflected in the enlightened nature of the conversation.
Rati Forbes, Director of the Forbes Marshall Group and also the chair of CAP’s board – well-known and respected for her long and active engagement with the social sector and CAP – moderated the conference’s most interesting session on the crucial and complex topic of board governance.
And as if the sessions themselves were not noteworthy for their level of engagement, the tea and meal breaks witnessed plenty of animated interaction between all present at the conference.
‘Compliance Complete’ was meant to officially kick-off CAP’s 30-year anniversary, while simultaneously announcing its evolution from ‘a chamber of philanthropy and clearing house of information on the social sector’ to a one-stop-shop on compliance for the social sector through its offerings in 8 core areas of compliance. These are Fiscal and Legal Compliance, best practices in Board Governance, Strategy, Communication and Volunteer Management and compliance in the areas of Human Resources and Fundraising.
Recently, CAP has also expanded its capacity-building program and services to include the awarding of a Complete Compliance Certification to participating organizations based on their ability to meet the requirements of CAP’s proprietary Compliance Checklist. Therefore, it is also poised to be the go-to destination for capacity building towards a more ethical and legally compliant social sector.
In fact, Noshir H Dadrawala, CAP’s CEO since its founding in 1986, stressed at many points throughout the day that this has always been the CAP’s raison d’etre. Dadrawala’s vast experience and knowledge, were nurtured early on by his mentors the late Russi Lala, the late R R Chari and industrialist and philanthropist Darius Forbes – and historical perspective, make Dadrawala’s advice an invaluable resource to NGOs, charities and trusts, NGO-corporate partnerships and CSR initiatives.
The driving force behind the conference itself and indeed CAP’s evolution into a robust one-stop-shop on the social sector’s compliance needs and capacity building towards holistic compliance is Meher Gandevia-Billimoria, CAP’s Chief Operations Officer, in charge of CAP’s growth and programs. Today times have changed and so have the needs and demands of the sector and Meher meticulously curette the conference essentially as an initial sampling of the larger offering to follow.
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