The Founder

Vinayak Lohani Resized

Vinayak Lohani, the Founder of Parivaar, did B.Tech from Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (2000) and MBA from Indian Institute of Management Calcutta (2003). He did not appear for the placement process at IIM, and immediately after his MBA, started Parivaar. The normal career-path of a mainstream corporate career following degrees from two of the most prestigious institutes in India ensures a highly lucrative future, but Vinayak Lohani sacrificed this to work at the grassroots level.

He was inspired by the spiritual and humanistic ideals of Swami Vivekananda, and with just 3 children in a small rented building with almost no financial resources, Vinayak started Parivaar. As on August 2016, Parivaar’s Residential Institution has 1458 resident children and is considered to be a model institution for caretaking and overall development of children from destitute backgrounds in a residential setting. It is also the largest free residential institution for children from impoverished backgrounds in whole of West Bengal. Parivaar is slated to reach a capacity of 2000 residential children by 2018 and in next 10 years aims to become India’s largest residential institution for children from impoverished backgrounds.

On Vinayak and Parivaar, many academic case-studies have been authored dealing with grassroots Social Entrepreneurship and Organization-building. These cases have been taught and discussed at various B-Schools in India. Best-selling author Rashmi Bansal’s book ‘I have a Dream’ has an entire chapter on Vinayak Lohani and the initial phase of Parivaar.

Roles with Government of India

  • Induction into Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE) (2015 onwards), the apex consultational forum in Ministry of Human Resources Development, Government of India.
  • Induction into the National Committee for Promotion of Social and Economic Welfare constituted by the Ministry of Finance, Government of India (2014-2017)
  • Inducted into the Governing Board of Childline India Foundation (2014 onwards), constituted by the Ministry of Women and Child which manages 24 hour child helpline services across nearly 350 towns in India.
  • Inducted as a Member of Bharat Rural Livelihood Foundation (BRLF) (2015 onwards), set up by the Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India, as a funding and capacity-building institution towards accelerating sustainable action in the domain of rural livelihoods.
  • Induction into Government of India’s Ministry of Women and Child’s Working Group for the Twelfth Five Year Plan (2011).

Academic Background

  • Graduation (B.Tech) from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur (1996-2000)
  • Post-Graduation (MBA) from Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Calcutta (2001-2003)

Academic Engagements

2015

  • 30 hour (20 session) lectures delivered on various aspects of Social Entrepreneurship at IIM Calcutta for its MBA students from June ‘15 to Aug ‘15.
  • 25 hour (20 session) lectures delivered on various aspects of Social Entrepreneurship at IIM Indore for its management students from Oct ’15 onwards.

2014

  • 25 hour (20 session) lectures delivered on various aspects of Social Entrepreneurship at IIM Indore for its management students from Oct ’14 to Jan ‘15.
  • Anchored a series of talks featuring 7 eminent Social Entrepreneurs at IIM Indore in 2014.

Publications

Published articles in Economic and Political Weekly, The Times of India, Outlook etc.

Important Invited Lectures / Talks delivered 

Vinayak Lohani generally speaks on his experiences as a social institution-builder with both practitioner’s as well as academic perspectives on Social Entrepreneurship. Also, he frequently speaks on the themes of Swami Vivekananda, and various dimensions of the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Movement.           

Talks on Social Entrepreneurship, Philanthropic Engagement, and Civil Society Action

Outside India

  • Social Entrepreneurship Talk at Google Headquarters, Mountain View, California, United States in Oct 2015.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Talk at eBay Headquarters, Mountain View, California, United States in Oct 2015.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Talk at Facebook Headquarters, Menlo Park, California, United States in Oct 2015.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Talk at GSV Labs, Mountain View, California, United States in Oct 2015.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lecture delivered at Morgan Stanley Hong Kong in Feb 2011 .
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lecture delivered at Deutsche Bank Singapore in June 2011 and Aug 2013.
  • IIT Alumni Professional Talk Series Lecture at Singapore in June 2011.
  • Talks and lectures delivered upon invitation by various civil society forums in the United States in New York City, Washington DC, Chicago, Los Angeles, Bay Area, and Boston in Nov 2013.

Within India

2015

  • 30 hour (20 session) lectures delivered on various aspects of Social Entrepreneurship at IIM Calcutta for its MBA students from June ‘15 to Aug ‘15.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lectures at Indian Institute of Management Kashipur September 2015.
  • Keynote Speaker at SusCon (Conference on Sustainability) ‘14-‘15 at IIM Shillong in March 2015.
  • Talk delivered at MET (Movement for Efficiency and Transparency) organised by mJunction and NMDC at Hyderabad in March 2015.
  • Talk delivered at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan Raipur in March 2015.

2014

  • 25 hour (20 session) lectures delivered on various aspects of Social Entrepreneurship at IIM Indore in its Integrated Program in Management for 110 participants from Oct ’14 to Jan ‘15.
  • Anchored a series of talks featuring 7 eminent Social Entrepreneurs in the country at IIM Indore in 2014
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lectures at Indian Institute of Management Calcutta in Sep 2014.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lectures at Tata Institute of Social Science (TISS) Mumbai in June 2014.

2013

  • Social Entrepreneurship Lectures at Indian Institute of Management Calcutta in Aug 2013.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lectures at Tata Institute of Social Science (TISS) Mumbai in Sep 2013.
  • Talk delivered on ‘Inspiring Youth’ at Tata Consultancy Services, Kolkata under its CSR program in June 2013
  • Keynote Speaker at the Annual Corporate Day of Nucleus Software, Noida in July 2013
  • Speaker at Pondicherry University’s Management School at their Annual Management Convention in October 2013.
  • Inaugural Speaker at the NGO and Social workers’ Convention at the British Council, Kolkata in March 2013

2012

  • Welcome Lecture to new batch of MBA and PhD students at IIM Calcutta in June 2012.
  • Keynote Lecture at All India Chartered Accountants Students Conference organised by ICAI at Baroda in July 2012
  • Talk delivered at Bombay Chartered Accountants Association, Mumbai in July 2012.

2011

  • Institute Lecture Series Talk at Indian Institute of Management Calcutta 2011.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lectures at Indian Institute of Management Bangalore in Nov 2011.

2010 and before

  • Talk delivered at India Infoline, Mumbai in October 2010.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Talk 2009 organised by Infosys Leadership Institute at Infosys, Bangalore.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lectures at Indian Institute of Management Bangalore in Sep 2009.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lecture at Indian Institute of Management Indore in Nov 2009.
  • Social Entrepreneurship Lecture at XLRI Jamshedpur in Dec 2009.
  • Talk delivered at CLSA, Mumbai in December 2009.

Inspirational Talks on Swami Vivekananda’s ideas

2015

  • Speaker at the Annual Convention at the Ramakrishna Mission Ranchi and RKM Vivekananda University Ranchi centre in April 2015.
  • Talk delivered on the subject ‘Spirit of Service in Professional Life’ to faculty of Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda Centenary College at Rahara, West Bengal, in August ‘15.
  • Delivered the ‘Swami Virajananda Memorial Lecture’ at Ramakrishna Mission Residential College Narendrapur, West Bengal, in September ’15.
  • Speaker at the International Seminar on ‘Values in Public Life’ at the Madhya Pradesh Vidhan Sabha, Bhopal in April 2015 on ‘The Philosophical Basis of Values as per Swami Vivekananda’.
  • Chief Speaker at the Bengal Engineering College Shibpur at Swami Vivekananda’s Birthday celebrations in January 2015.
  • Talk delivered at Yugantar Engineering College, Rajnandagaon, Chhatisgarh on ‘Swami Vivekananda : Perennial Inspiraton’ in March 2015.
  • Talk delivered at Sant Singaji Institute of Science and Management on ‘Swami Vivekananda : Perennial Inspiraton’ in Sep 2015’.

2014

  • Talk delivered at Ramakrishna Mission Institute of Culture, Kolkata on Swami Ranganathananda Memorial Day in December 2014.
  • Talk delivered at the International Youth Convention organised by Ramakrishna Mission at Belur Math on the occasion of 150th Birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda in January 2014.
  • Keynote Speaker at the Annual Inaugural of the Vivekananda Study Circle at IIT Madras, co-organised by IIT Madras and Ramakrishna Mission Chennai in August 2014.

2013

  • Talk delivered at the International Youth Convention organised by Ramakrishna Mission Mumbai on the occasion of 150th Birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda in September 2013.
  • Keynote Speaker at All-India Youth Convention organised by Sri Sarada Math, Kolkata on the occasion of 150th Birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda in March 2013.

Mentoring other Organizations and Broader role in the Social Sector

Vinayak Lohani has also used competencies of Parivaar in mentoring a large number of organizations in different parts of India, and has helped many of these organizations to reach a certain maturity level through the collaborative forum of donors and grassroots NGOs called ‘Caring Friends’ ( www.caringfriends.in ). Caring Friends has more than 30 NGOs and a large number of individual donors as its associates. Vinayak Lohani has played an important role in expansion of donor-base of Caring Friends, due-diligence during the induction and probationary period of new associates NGOs. As a part of the Core team of Caring Friends, he has been a part of evaluation and due-diligence visits to 20 NGOs in the network.

Especially, he has been an honorary mentor to the following NGOs:

  1. Sant Singaji Educational Trust (www.ssism.org)

Founded by Pranjal Dubey, this Society runs an undergraduate college in village Sandalpur in Dewas district of Madhya Pradesh for rural youth – the core ideology of society is to bring about socio economic transformation of the society by imparting high quality holistic education to rural youth. Vinayak Lohani has helped this organization towards establishing itself in the philanthropic funding space.

  1. Aastha Gram trust, Khargone, Madhya Pradesh

This organization runs a small hospital in the predominantly tribal district of Khargone under the leadership of ex Major Dr Anuradha. It also runs a shelter home and special school for children of disabilities like visually disabled, mentally retarded, deaf and mute. Vinayak Lohani has been instrumental towards organizing a sustainable funding inflow for its activities.

  1. Society for Communities Intervention and Research (SCIR), Kolkata, West Bengal

This Organization works in the slums in Park Circus area of Kolkata city and is afflicted by high illiteracy, drug addiction, and other social evils. It ran a school and other livelihood programs for women of the area. A few years back it was on the verge of closure until Vinayak Lohani revived it by organization sustainable funding for its key programs. Today the SCIR School has more than 200 students and about 70 women get livelihood and vocational training. Mr Lohani has been a key member of SCIR’s Governing Board.

  1. Samaritan Help Mission Howrah, West Bengal

This organization works in the field of education, healthcare, and women’s livelihood in slums in a Kolkata suburb. Vinayak Lohani has for last 9 years helped it scale through fundraising and building-up of a sustainable support-base, team-building at leadership level, strengthening of regulatory and governance procedures etc. It runs a School for 2200 children and women’s livelihood programs for more than 300 women in addition to microfinance and medical support to the community. He has also served as President of the Governing Board of this Organization.

  1. Malwi Education Charitable Trust, Gujarat

This organization works in field of education of children from tribal areas in Gujarat. It runs a residential school for 250 children from tribal communities in Gujarat. Vinayak Lohani has mentored the founder of this organization in streamlining the vision and scaling plan of the organization and worked on a strategy to achieve that.

  1. Shri Ramesh Prakash Samajik Sansthan, Itarsi

It is aimed at providing platform to marginalized students to explore various higher education opportunities after High School and has a linkage and support-system for rural students to prestigious universities all over India through its flagship program – ‘Bharat Calling’. Vinayak Lohani has been an advisor and mentor to the founder of this organization, Sandeep Mehto, for a clearer strategic vision and to develop building blocks for the Organization to achieve scaling.