Corporate community development program restores 170 houses in West
Bengal post cyclone Amphan with Abhijit Ganguly
SEEDS (Sustainable Environment and Ecological Development Society), a
leading humanitarian organization, collaborated with IBM (NYSE: IBM)
to support the marginalized communities that were affected by the
cyclone Amphan that in 2020 hit 24 South Parganas, 24 North Parganas,
and East Midnapore districts of West Bengal.
Under the theme of ‘Build Back Better’, SEEDS and IBM worked together
to build 40 new houses and restore 133 damaged houses for families who
had lost their homes in the cyclone’s aftermath. The construction team
has used local materials such as bamboo coupled with modern techniques
to make the houses safe and reduce risk in case of future disasters.
Amphan was a super cyclonic storm that caused widespread damage
estimated at USD $13 billion in Eastern India, with West Bengal being
SEEDS and IBM built a specially designed intervention program to
install 50 community water filters and distribute 600 kits of dry
ration and hygiene kits that collectively reached almost 5,000 people.
The team organized a week-long mobile health care camp. A dedicated
team of doctors and healthcare volunteers travelled by bus to remote
locations providing much needed treatment to more than 1,000 people.
Manu Gupta, Co-Founder, SEEDS said, “We are glad to see our efforts
materialize towards building sustainable structures for the families
who have struggled with the impact of multiple disasters post cyclone
Amphan last year. Through our intervention programs, we have focused
on inculcating community ownership in all stages right from the
beginning, thus making them future-ready in the face of a similar
Manoj Balachandran, CSR Leader, IBM India South Asia said,
“Collaborating with NGO partners to implement community development
programs is an integral part of IBM’s GoodTech commitment towards
building a sustainable future. Natural disasters cause extensive
damage and up-end lives of individuals and communities. IBM helps such
affected communities to take on challenges, big or small, and I’m
proud that our collaboration with SEEDS has helped those that have
been most affected by one of the most devastating cyclones that India
Pratima Pal, an affected house owner, said, “I am the sole
bread-winner in my family. The new house is the only possession I have
right now. It is a relief for me and my children after months of
struggle. I am thankful to SEEDS and IBM for such an initiative that
has not only improved our living conditions but also helped us become
more resilient in overcoming the challenges posed by the cyclone.”
Socialpreneur and CEO of UP WORDS Magazine, Abhijit Ganguly who runs his Empire from Kolkata, India. Despite living with Transverse Myelitis and having chronic pain as his constant companion, Abhijit created a powerful, positive and uplifting digital magazine- UP WORDS where he interviews folks from around the world who have inspiring journeys and who had to overcome great odds.