Yep, it’s that time of the year – where we either take stock or push the accelerator.
If we’re taking stock, I would like to congratulate our Leading Women in CSI for 2022 – we will be celebrating these women over the next 12 months. In acceleration mode, we are happy to announce the launch of our biggest annual programme yet – Colour, CSI’s Annual General Summit.
Colour is a programme that brings government, corporates, NGOs and social entrepreneurs into one room to learn what each is doing with regard to social projects and on-the-ground programmes. Most importantly, this is where each organisation draws attention to the areas where they need help and corporates and funders can direct their assistance.
I am sure we all know that for years Corporate CSI Managers had to do extensive research to learn what, for example, the Department of Education in the North West Province is doing, what development work is being carried out in the Eastern Cape, or even to learn about which social projects, programmes or efforts need support. Each CSI Manager knows that either we learn from the limited research or are forced to conduct our own research. Why? Because we had no real data.
This research process continues to cost the industry time, money and at times real effort to address the actual, true needs. Sadly, some research misses the most important and worthwhile programmes or projects that need help. That is why we are launching Colour. Colour is a conduit designed to help us to learn from real, on-the-ground programmes, projects and activities. What better way to do our work than to learn from real people doing the real work on the ground.
One of the key goals for Colour is that corporates and organisations will find each other in one week and strike real tangible deals. We have always worked hard to make sure that our programmes are practical and tangible. A simple example is our Funders Round programme. Today millions and millions of rands have passed hands through this programme and I hear that the relationships between the corporates and NGOs remain intact to this day.
Indalo Inclusive, for example, met Nedbank through our platform and to this day Nedbank has committed to over ZAR2 million rand in a short space of time – just 12 months. Another organisation received ZAR8 million for 12 months to run a social entrepreneurship programme. Let us not forget Thanda from Kwa-Zulu Natal who have received over ZAR 3 million simply through attending our Funders Round programme.
Now, Colour brings government into the picture, as well as NGOs and social enterprises. And we launch Colour by initiating the CSI Legacy Awards. I have to remind our myself that for the inaugural summit we will limit our exhibition stands to around fifty. The reason is that we are also learning, and we would prefer to do our job well rather than bite off more than we can chew! I am happy to say that around 18 Stands have already been taken and I think we have around 32 remaining.
If you have attended any of our programmes you would know or would have seen that our venues are always fully booked. As a colleague from the industry once said, “You have a good problem here, people are looking for chairs to sit.” The secret is to take on the projects in small doses – doses that you can manage.
With that said, I am happy to officially announce that the nominations for the 2023 CSI Legacy Awards are now open.
Please allow me to explain that the Awards will be happening during Colour. On the second night of the week-long Summit, we will host the star-studded event with 150 of the 500 expected guests. We are hosting the Awards on the second night because the Colour Summit will still be available during the following days for our winners to network and have time to spend with potential funders.
Please look out for all the full info on the Colour Summit which is coming shortly.