In the times of ego running tall and self interests rule the roost in modern society, there are few who really cares for the society. And here’s a person with a philanthropic bent of mind, ever since he took over the profession of CA.
Meet CA Hemant Lodha, Managing Director of one of the best waste management companies called SMS Envocare; the group company promoted by SMS Infrastructure Ltd. Nagpur Today explores more about Hemant Lodha in an unwinding chat with the man himself.
Hemant advocates the view that a person should have a well defined objective in life that certainly include love and concern for fellow – humans for fulfillment of life’s ambition. He is the Founder of an organization called CAFÉ (Child Adoption For Education). He recalled his childhood when his family was not so well off financially. Yet, his mother made it a point to cook 3-4 chapatis more for feeding the stray street animals. His mother’s caring concern had instilled in him the spirit of social work and philanthropy. Eventually he has shortlisted the essentials.
Govt’s efforts are not all
According to Hemant, education is one field where there is a scope for doing something. He said the government however does many things for the education of children, but it remains limited to girl child or for village or slum children. The government provides free infrastructure, teachers and other educational inputs like free books. This does not suffice. The government does not provide shoes, socks, school bags, water-bottle, drawing copy, note-books, Pencil, eraser, sharpener, uniform sets etc. These are the things that Hemant organizes to be procured and packed into a kit.
Focus of all round child development
He added that he focuses on primary schools in villages. One more section that is often ignored is the mentally & physical development of the children. He said that this kit acts like an incentive to attract the kids to come to school. Hemant said that he procures these materials which include shoes, socks, school bags, water-bottle, drawing copy, note-books, Pencil, eraser, sharpener, uniform sets directly from the manufacturers and wholesalers.
Sourcing funds for cause
The CAFÉ identifies patrons. Hemant said approaching each and everyone is not possible, however he has a list of around 1000 patrons. Apart from his own initiatives, he urges some NGOs and international philanthropic organizations also to start a fund raising drive among their members. He then provides the list of beneficiaries (after identifying them from a particular village, slum area). He urges the organization to go to the site and distribute it themselves, so that he is not blamed of seeking fame through other’s donations.
He added that there are Mentors like Lion’s Club, Rotary Club, Free Masons, organizations like ICAI etc (who have more than 1000 to 2000 members) who are urged to collect Rs 700/- from each member and go to these villages to distribute the kit themselves.
Funding with proper research
Hemant does not just donate things. He does a proper research using the personnel of his own office and identifies villages where there is a need for intervention. He identifies very poor children who do not go to school. The goods that he donates, acts as an incentive to bring the children to school, so that they get educated.
Absolute transparency is maintained in this initiative undertaken by him. The names of the beneficiaries (Children) are uploaded onto the computer. Anybody can verify which child has benefitted from the donation that he or she has given.
18,000 kids benefitted in 6 years
Based on the data displayed on www.helplink.info, he said that 18,000 children were benefitted in the last 6 years. This makes around 3000 kids per year.
Apart from this Hemant is also involved in an organization called Financial Assistance for Complete Education (FACE).This organization takes care of the financial burden of the complete professional education of selected meritorious students. They have identified 2 students from Blue Diamond School who have scored 94 %. He added that their organization links the noble with the needy. He claimed that they have the 80 G and the 210 A certificates which will give tax benefits to the donors.
Hostel of HIV infected children
Apart from this Hemant Lodha does something extraordinary and exemplary which many even hesitate to venture into. He has taken the onus of taking care of children who are HIV Positive. Hemant stated that no hostel wants them nor do their own relatives. This in-turn results in these children being ignored and forgotten by the society at large. He has a hostel in Dhaba.
Hemant Lodha is from Jodhpur in Rajasthan. He is a follower of Jain religion. He has one son and one daughter. His son Prateek Lodha is a Ph.D. in Bio-Technology and is presently a citizen of Canada. His daughter Prachi Daga who is CA, ICWA, CFA is married and is presently in Dubai.
As told to Samuel Gunasekharan