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ILSS gets funding from A.T.E. Chandra Foundation

Date : Jun 11 , 2019 | In The News

India Leaders for Social Sector (ILSS), a Gurgaon-based non-profit, has received funding from A.T.E. Chandra Foundation (ATECF), the philanthropic foundation of Archana and Amit Chandra. The grant will be used towards building organisational capacity at ILSS, which seeks to strengthen leadership for the country’s social sector.

Amit Chandra, Chairman at Bain Capital India, is a leading Indian philanthropist and a founder/board member of Ashoka University and a board member of Give India and The Akanksha Foundation, among his other associations with non-profits and foundations. Archana Chandra is the CEO of Jai Vakeel Foundation & Research Centre, one of the largest NGOs serving intellectually challenged children. The Chandras featured in the Forbes ‘Asia’s Heroes of Philanthropy’ list in 2016.

ILSS, incubated by the Ashish Dhawan-founded Central Square Foundation in September 2017, specifically focuses on enabling senior corporate executives to transition to the social sector in order to enhance the diversity of talent and skills in the sector.

“ILSS currently offers a pioneering nine-day leadership program for leaders from various backgrounds, particularly from corporates, who are looking for careers with social purpose. We also offer post-program support in terms of placement, mentoring and coaching  as our alumni embark on their journey to the social sector,” says Anu Prasad, founder of ILSS.  “The grant from A.T.E. Chandra Foundation will allow us to invest in our organisational capacity which, in turn, will  help us strengthen our program and post-program offering and build a strong pipeline of change leaders.”

“The A.T.E. Chandra Foundation is privileged to support ILSS, given its focus on enabling high quality talent movement from the corporate world into the social sector is core to our own focus of capacity building in it,” says Amit Chandra, Chairman of Bain Capital’s India office. 

ATECF supports various projects and initiatives in two core verticals: rural transformation and sector capacity building. The Foundation works closely with leading Indian and global players in the social sector to create a more equitable, inclusive and sustainable society. The grant for ILSS is in line with the Foundation’s ‘systemic capacity building’ efforts to help create leaders for the social sector.

ILSS has so far conducted five editions of its nine-day leadership program, with 85 leaders from areas such as media, banking, fintech, advertising and telecom, and companies such as IBM, Standard Chartered Bank, American Express, Tata group, Airtel and Star TV participating in the residential program held at Ashoka University. ILSS alumni are today in leadership roles in leading organisations such as Public Health Foundation of India, Kaivalya Education Foundation, Educate Girls, Ashoka University, and Central Square Foundation.


About Amit Chandra:   Amit Chandra joined Bain Capital as Managing Director in early 2008 and is part of the company’s leadership team in Asia. He is the founder of Bain’s Mumbai office and is currently Chairman of the company’s India office.

He was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2007. He is or has been associated as a Trustee of the Tata Trusts, as a Founder/Board Member of Ashoka University, a Board Member of Give India (India’s leading philanthropic exchange) and The Akanksha Foundation. He also a Member of the Advisory Boards of Bridgespan in India, the Centre for Social Impact & Philanthropy, and Swades Foundation.

Prior to joining Bain Capital, Amit spent most of his professional career at DSP Merrill Lynch, a leading investment bank in India. At the firm, he had direct oversight of its Global Markets & Investment Banking business, which included the firm’s substantial principal investment businesses. He retired from DSP Merrill Lynch in 2007 as its Board Member & Managing Director, to move to Private Equity.

He received his undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering from VJTI, Bombay University, post which he worked at India’s leading engineering & construction firm, Larsen & Toubro. He then received his MBA from Boston College and was awarded the school’s Distinguished Alumni in 2007.

About Archana Chandra: Archana Chandra is the CEO of Jai Vakeel Foundation & Research Centre, which is one of the largest NGOs serving intellectually challenged children. She serves as the Trustee of SRCC, which in collaboration with NH, has built one of the largest paediatric hospitals in the country. She is also on the Advisory Board of Annamrita (part of the ISKCON Food Relief Foundation) and Antarang Foundation.

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