India's best bank for CSR 2023: RBL Bank
In its determination to spread the benefits of India’s rapid economic growth, RBL Bank has happened upon an interesting strategy involving the bicycle.
It is all part of RBL’s signature Power of the Pedal programme that is aimed primarily at girls. As CEO RS Kumar explains it, education “is an important cog in the cycle of a girl’s life, helping them move forward.” The trouble is, not every girl in India has the means to travel to their preferred school.
RBL’s 'Umeed 1000' initiative donates bicycles and school-kits (Umeed means hope). The idea, bank officials say, is that owning a bicycle will pave the way for India’s consumers of tomorrow to afford cars.
Female students are identified by the bank with the support of the respective government departments in the different Indian states. This innovative corporate social responsibility initiative has already been rolled out in Raipur, Guwahati, Goa, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Chennai and Siliguri.
The bicycle scheme is one of many that RBL has introduced in recent years. In 2020, the bank set an ambitious corporate social responsibility goal to reach the most underserved marginalized communities in what is now the world’s most populous nation.