Canon India Marks a Milestone With 1st Anniversary of Maheshwari Village Adoption
Continuing its commitment towards community development, Canon India today celebrated one year of successful intervention in Maheshwari Village, Haryana, under its flagship CSR initiative, ‘Adopt a Village’. The imaging leader builds its CSR endeavors in line with its corporate philosophy of ‘Kyosei’, which embodies the spirit of ‘living and working together for the common good’. ‘Kyosei’ envisions the achievement of a sustainable society in which all people regardless of race, religion or culture, live harmoniously and work together into the future. Through their corporate activities based on ‘Kyosei’, both globally and locally, Canon strives to resolve imbalances in the world, in the core areas of 4Es, i.e. Education, Eye Care, Environment and Empowerment. Staying true to these values, the organization has brought forth various community driven initiatives, aimed at social development.
Through ‘Adopt a Village’ initiated in 2012, Canon India adopts villages for a period of 5 years and aims to work towards their progress with a strategic focus on 4Es CSR policy. Adopted in 2018, Maheshwari became the 5th village that was adopted by Canon India and since then, the organization has focused on the development of over 4000 villagers, with a special focus on the holistic development of children in the village school.
To celebrate this occasion, Mr. Kazutada Kobayashi, President & CEO, Canon India and Mr. Gary Lee, Vice-President & CFO visited the village. They were also accompanied by 50 employees from Canon India Head office along with 5 partners. As part of this visit, Mr. Kobayashi felicitated a batch of 15 adolescent girls, for successfully completing their three month vocational training at the vocational training center in the village, facilitated by Canon India. Further to this, he also distributed spectacles to 31 children.
Elaborating about the milestone, Mr. Kazutada Kobayashi, President & CEO, Canon India, said, “At Canon, community development remains core to every initiative undertaken by us, aided by our 4Es CSR policy. Going beyond business, we are deeply committed towards holistic progress of the society, and therefore we are determined to work towards the same through our CSR contributions. Today, as we mark the first anniversary of our adoption of Maheshwari village, I am proud to see our relentless work, which has resulted in significant improvements in the village. We have witnessed an increase amongst the children for the enrolment in school, representing their zeal to learn and explore uncharted territories. It feels rewarding to have provided 320 children in the village with a platform to excel, leading to their academic advancement. The smiles across the faces of 4000 villagers will further drive us to continue our pledge for social development under ‘Canon India Involve’.”
Highlighting on the future plans, Mr. Kobayashi further added, “Going forward, we will continue to drive meaningful and welfare driven initiatives to impact more lives and make our communities future ready. We are positive that we will be able to bring about even greater change in Maheshwari, empowering the villagers to grow in a better and sustainable environment.”
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Gary Lee, Vice President and CFO, Canon India said, “Commitment to the community comes very naturally to all Canon employees across the country. It is an integral element of our brand’s DNA and reflects prominently in our work ethics. Our employees take equal interest in engaging with kids from our adopted villages to create awareness and lead them to a brighter future. With Maheshwari village completing one fruitful year of association with us, it gives me immense satisfaction to see the developments made in our core focus areas of Education, Environment, Eye Care and Empowerment. With the support of our stakeholders, we are confident that we will further amplify our efforts, reach out to more communities and inspire others to come together and work for the betterment of the society.”
Adopt a Village’s journey with Maheshwari Village
In the past 1 year, Maheshwari Village has witnessed notable developments through Canon India’s implementation of a wide range of activities, under its four core areas, including Education, Eye Care, Environment and Empowerment.
– Education has been a key focus area, with the establishment of a ‘Resource Center’ with learning and playing material accessible to about 107 students from 1st to 5th grade. A daily habit of reading newspapers is also encouraged as a part of practical knowledge that is being imparted to the children on a daily basis. To expand their horizon of learning, theme based learning is promoted through ‘Katha’ books, where teachers take up themes on a monthly basis to draw children towards important issues. A special thrust has been given on facilitating e-learning among children , where they are taught basics of computer and internet. With the support of Canon employees, a friendlier infrastructure has been established with repair and maintenance of school premises, seating more students for better education and enlightenment.
– Eye Care has been strengthened with establishment of a ‘Vision Center’, where free of cost eye check-ups are provided to the villagers and children, under the supervision of eye technicians. 786 beneficiaries have visited the centre, out of which 80 were referred to hospital for further treatment. 4 eye camps were conducted during the year which reached out to 273 villagers with poor vision and as a result, 184 villagers were provided with spectacles , under the supervision of an eye-care specialist.
– Environment activities include regular tree plantation drives, ground levelling activities and environmental awareness sessions, which are conducted with the involvement of Canon employees. 38 Solar Street Lights and 10 KW of solar panels have been installed in the village to contribute to the environment along with ensuring safety of the villagers. Canon has planted 185 trees across the village along with helping villagers to establish kitchen gardens over the past one year. The organization has also placed eco-friendly dustbins in the school premises, to spread awareness about environment protection.
– Empowerment being the key to self-sustainable living, a vocational training center has been established in the village by Canon, equipped with computers to encourage digital education. The organization has donated 12 laptops for the centre through which a dedicated trainer provides computer literacy to 250 school students along with 45 village youth. They are trained in basic computing skills, Microsoft Office software and internet, which can make them adept for job prospects in the future. The organization understands the importance of generating awareness amongst villagers on issues of importance which plays a key role in empowering them. Hence, regular awareness sessions are conducted on subjects like health & hygiene, girl child education, menstrual hygiene, water conservation and environment protection among others.
Continuing its focus on the 4Es, Canon has also made remarkable infrastructural advancements in the village in the past one year. A sustainable water tank was inaugurated enabled with RO today, aimed at providing children access to clean and safe drinking water. The organization has also undertaken renovation of separate toilets for boys and girls in the school premises.
As a way-forward, the organization aims to continue their efforts for the next 4 years in Maheshwari until it attains a sustainable phase. The organization envisions to have more employees engage with the community on a frequent basis, to augment the CSR efforts. Along with Maheshwari, Canon India has three more adopted villages presently under ‘Adopt a Village’, which includes Maharaja Katte Village in Bangalore, Karanjoti Village in Mumbai and Sol Gohalia in Kolkata.
Taking forward their vision of 360 degree learning for children from adopted villages, Canon initiated a new campaign ‘Learning Beyond Books’ (LBB) in 2017, aimed at holistic development of children. Through the program, the organization enables a platform of experiential learning beyond their homes and school boundaries, providing them with multitude possibilities.
About Canon Group
Ever since its foundation in 1937, Canon is guided by the ‘Kyosei’ philosophy of living and working together for the common good. Canon strives to create and deliver world-class products, becoming a top global corporation by diversifying into new business fields throughout the world. Focusing on optical technologies, Canon produces office equipment, consumer and professional imaging devices, network cameras, healthcare and industrial equipment. Through the close connection between its global head office in Tokyo and regional headquarters in America, Europe, Asia, Oceania and regional headquarters in Japan, Canon combines its global and local operations organically. In 1996, Canon launched its Excellent Global Corporation Plan with the goal of serving the society with advanced technologies and becoming a trustworthy and responsible corporate citizen. The year 2016 was the first year of Phase 5 of the Plan. Currently, Canon boasts a strong global presence of 376 subsidiaries all over the world, supported by 197,776 employees. (Data as of December 31, 2017)