Narendra Modi, the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, addressed more than four million chiefs and employees of Indian tech organisations in a town hall event yesterday and launched Self4Society — an app and portal aimed at matching a corporate organisation’s resources with the voluntary efforts of its employees for societal change through causes which help improve agriculture productivity, tackling waste, enabling digital literacy, promoting equal opportunities for all, expanding the social startup ecosystem and partnering with government initiatives such as Swachh Bharat and Skill India. The portal developed by MyGov is expected to help catalyse greater collaboration towards the service of the weaker sections of society, especially by leveraging the benefits of technology.
It was a delight to witness one of the core objectives of Earthr.org being discussed on a respected platform by the leader of the nation. Earthr.org brings Sustainability Problems, Solutions, Entrepreneurs and Investments together on one platform through Crowdsourcing. Learn about Earthr.org in less than 90 seconds. In a span of a few months, the website has crowdsourced 100+ Problems and 350+ Solutions to tackle areas like Climate Change, Waste, Inequalities, Illiteracy, Energy, etc.
The list of Problems and Solutions on Earthr.org makes it very easy for volunteers and organisations to search for ideas that have already been proven in different geographies and can readily be implemented in the regional setup. Take, for example, problems like How can farmers be helped to produce better yields and reduce wastage? or How can packaging be made more sustainable? which have received a fair amount of responses. Users have contributed ideas like the XO Laptop and the Rumie Initiative to promote digital literacy, Open community fridges and SecondBite for proper reallocation of excess food and TorchIt which is a gadget for the visually challenged.
The XO Laptop
Rumie — A tablet with a preloaded library
An open community fridge in London
Project leaders and volunteers get a buffet of proven ideas to implement and solve critical sustainability issues in their localities with the help of CSR budgets kept aside by their organisations. They can also team up with like-minded volunteers from other organisations working towards the same cause.
A majority of these solutions are scalable social businesses which can impact masses on a large scale. Not surprisingly, a good proportion of investment networks and funds are also aligning themselves to solve these societal problems. PM Modi also said that since India has already become the third largest in terms of the start-up, social start-ups should become an intrinsic part of the ecosystem. He explained that the line is very thin between what is a business model and what is a social start-up model and touched upon areas such as electric vehicles which will serve both the purposes. (Source)
Earthr.org has a diverse and distributed team which works on finding the best solutions to some of the most pressing challenges of our times and on spreading awareness through sensitisation talks in corporate and academic organisations, casual Planet Meets, movie screenings among others.
Earthr.org speaks to college students in Gujarat
Planet Meet: How can Art and Design Save the Planet?
Self4Society’s official website, which went live on Wednesday evening, shows that 100+ organisations have already participated across 120+ initiatives, Earthr.org being one of these early movers. The team welcomes this initiative by the Government of India and wishes the leadership team much success and positive energies in seeing it through.
Prime Minister Modi remarked that doing social work should be a matter of great pride for everyone — only governments or only corporations cannot be assigned the responsibility of making and mending. Earth is a home to all of us, and it is our inherent responsibility to take good care of it and to make sure that we pass it on to the next generations better than it was passed on to us.