New Delhi, Apr 9 (PTI) SBI Foundation, the CSR arm of State Bank of India (SBI) on Sunday committed Rs 30 lakh as a grant to 8 ventures who work at the grassroot level to bring change in the lives of rural population.

The selection for the grant is done on the basis of projects submitted by fellows of SBI Youth for India programme, and depending on the assessment, grant is pledged during 'SBI YFI Sahyog - The Pitch Fest', SBI Foundation CEO and Managing Director Sanjay Prakash told PTI.

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Four top winning ideas are given support of Rs 6 lakh each while four runners-up are given Rs 1.5 lakh each, he said after the selection process on Sunday.

Last year, he said, the Foundation had given a grant of Rs 20 lakh to selected few social enterprises both under non-profit and for-profit ventures by the SBI Youth for India (YFI) Alumni.

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Under SBI YFI programme started in 2011, he said, around 100 professionals or fresh graduates are selected as fellows, who join hands and foster change with rural communities and NGOs at grassroots across 17 Indian states.

The programme, inspired by US 'PeaceCorps', works on 12 thematic areas such as health, rural livelihood, food security, environmental protection, education, water, technology, women's empowerment, self-governance, social entrepreneurship, traditional craft and alternate energy, he said.

During the fellowship programme, these selected persons work on one of these 12 areas as per their interest and are paid stipend of around Rs 17,000 per month, he said.

The 13-month long fellowship provides an active framework for the youth to come up with sustainable development solutions for rural development and capacity building in multiple ways, he said, adding, projects implemented by fellows have helped accelerate rural development, as also resulted in inclusive and sustained growth across the remotest corners of the country, he said.

“The future change drivers for our nation will be its young demographic that is educated and socially aware. We have seen our Youth for India fellows foster and implement ideas for social development to drive on-ground change in rural India. As an organization, we are also proud to fuel social enterprise and directly contribute to India's G20 goals,” he said.

AIZHEIMERS, Aadiwasi Janjagruti, Eco-Circular India Foundation (ECIF) and NeoMotion are the winners of this year's SBI YFI Sahyog, while there are four runners-up.

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