India: Companies target children in social & environmental campaigns for more sustainable development

Author: Ashok Prasad, Guardian (UK), Published on: 24 July 2015

"Indian companies target children to push green messages ... and sell products", 22 Jul 2015

…[C]orporations are looking to play a more positive role in India’s sustainable development. Several have identified a common audience...children…Unilever, IT giant Wipro and regional language daily paper Mathrubhoomi are working on initiatives that use children to increase support for environmental causes. These social and environmental campaigns fall broadly into three main categories…The second focuses on behaviour change among children. Unilever brand Lifebuoy’s Help a Child Reach 5 seeks to develop a hand-washing habit among children to prevent deaths from diarrhoea. The third group consists of brands aligning themselves with children’s causes. Horlicks’ Ahaar Abhiyan (nutrition mission)…focuses messaging about its malnutrition prevention programmes on children under five…The end-objective of these environmental corporate initiatives is not altruism…But does this matter?...[P]roviding that these companies are also walking the walk when it comes to the environmental and social impact of their products and services, maybe this new marketing approach will help influence a more sustainable form of development.[Also refers to Ching’s Secret]

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Related companies: Unilever Wipro