Understanding that effective communication skills in the development and social impact sectors require special attention to strategy and delivery, the Centre for Development Management and Communication (CDMC) at MICA, Ahmedabad, introduced a 6-month certificate course on Strategic Communication and Partnerships Building for Social Impact.

The certificate course, tailored for social sector professionals and CSR teams to delve deeper into strategic communication, is offered in association with Impact Academy by CSRBOX. The institute recently held the first batch's e-valedictory ceremony for over 60 participants from various social sector organizations.

Over the six months, the participants learned fundamentals of communication in the social sector, the importance & role of ethical & sensitive communication, the importance of research & evidence-based approach for effective communication, the role of communication in brand building, new & emerging platforms for social impact communication for CSR projects, and tools and trends for fundraising.

The course facilitators include Prof. Manisha Pathak-Shelat, Chair, CDMC-MICA, Prof. Arbind Sinha, Advisor, CDMC-MICA, Ms. Sushama Oza, Advisor, CDMC-MICA, and Prof. Ruchi Tewari, MICA. The team has roped in industry experts and in-house experts from MICA, including Dr. Preeti Shroff, Dean, MICA, to deliver this course.

Prof. Manisha Pathak-Shelat, Chair, CDMC, and course mentor, said, "Organizations dealing with issues like poverty, gender-based violence, energy crisis, climate change, and refugee crisis need complex competencies to address these social challenges. And the only way towards it is partnership building with the government, civil society, and the corporate with complementary competencies.

This course strategically addresses the challenges faced by organizations that struggle and adopt a trial-and-error approach by providing holistic training to their professionals."

Course anchors Prof. Ruchi Tewari and Ms. Sushama Oza said, "This course drew lessons from the domains of strategic communication, social development, and partnership and dealt with ways of creating a social impact during the current times of crisis and technology-mediated communication environment.

Namrata Puntambekar, Research Scientist at Healis Sekhsaria Institute for Public Health, said, "Coming from a statistics background, I had very little knowledge about communications. This course has enlightened me with knowledge and open new paths and ways to think. The best part of the course was listening to guest speakers from wide backgrounds and how we can connect theory to reality."

Poonam Dinshaw, Founder, Just Social Impact, said, "This course was an eye-opener for me in many ways. The content was very well curated and is gradually seeping into my life. Advocacy for this course has already begun."

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