At Saraswat Bank, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is not a new exercise, it is a tradition. The Bank’s founders and their successors intuitively understood the relationship between cooperative institutions and philanthropy. They were presciently aware that a cooperative institution needed to stay connected with the needs and aspirations of society at large. CSR constitutes the umbilical cord that connects the Bank to society. The archetype of community service was established by its founder, late Shri Wamanrao Varde. His praiseworthy gesture during the Second World War has left its imprint on the collective consciousness of the Bank – when the people of Mumbai were facing a grave scarcity of food grains, late Shri Wamanrao Varde dared to set up a ration shop at Girgaum to mitigate their hardships and make available the basic necessities of life. During those days, Saraswat Bank was a community-centric bank, but none questioned his philanthropic act even though the Banking laws, Cooperative Laws, and the Bye-laws did not have any provision to facilitate opening of a ration shop. With this courageous act, he inked the blueprint for Corporate Social Responsibility, underscoring the importance of a cooperative institution’s contribution towards the larger social good.

Since then, the Bank has been providing financial assistance to many social, educational, and medical institutions by way of grants every year from its funds. It has been a forerunner during exigencies like floods, famines, earthquakes, etc. It has initiated scholarships and apprenticeships for deserving students and contributed in shaping the careers of several youngsters. The Bank as a whole aspires to propagate the teachings of its flag bearer, late Shri Wamanrao Varde, and serve the society at macro and micro levels.