Ms. Marie Banu

July 21, 2016, Chennai

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Marie Banu is a social worker and writer. Banu graduated in sociology from Stella Maris College, Chennai, and then pursued her MBA from Indira Gandhi National Open University. She is the Director of Centre for Social Initiative and Management (CSIM) Chennai and has written several books and research publications.


She is a trainer in Fundraising, Media, Communication, Advocacy, Social Entrepreneurship, Management, and Social Audit and serves as a consultant for several developmental organisations. She is also a member of the Redressal Committee of a leading educational Institution in Chennai, besides being a member of the Internal Complaints Committee of Bosch Electrical Drives India Private Limited.

Marie Banu started her career in the social sector when she was 25. She has worked for national as well as international developmental organizations— Danish International Development Agency, Action Aid and Oxfam International. From 1999 to 2005, she led the fundraising for Oxfam India and launched initiatives like the Doctor's Day; Old Newspaper Campaign, Donation boxes at Donor's homes, besides several others. She has also organised several fundraisers. Marie Banu handled the national and international media for Oxfam's tsunami response program in India from 2005 to 2009 and managed the Oxfam International's communication needs during this period.

In 2005, Marie Banu co-authored her first book Beyond Brick and Mortar – A Hand Book on Approaches to Permanent Shelters in Humanitarian Response – published by Oxfam International. Banu has authored several articles for Oxfam's Tsunami publications. She has also co-published a research document on temporary shelters 'Living with Hope'. This served as a strong tool for advocacy with government by the NGOs in Tamil Nadu.

In 2009, she joined Centre for Social Initiative and Management as Head – Communications. She was instrumental in launching CSIM's tabloid 'Conversations' in 2010 which was later renamed as 'Conversations Today' in 2013. She is the Chief Editor for this monthly tabloid and authors several articles for this publication besides interviewing celebrities in social work. Articles from Conversations Today are compiled and published into a book titled 'Unsung Beacons' every year. Celebrity interviews featured in 2010 and 2011 Conversations were published into a book titled 'Inspiring Conversations' in 2012. The foreword for this publication was written by Shri Nataraj IPS.

Marie Banu has attended the Master Class in Social Accounting and Audit conducted by Mr. Patrick Boase and Mr. Alan Kay of Social Audit Network, UK; and been mentored by Mr. Mike Swain of Social Audit Network, UK and Ms. Latha Suresh of Social Audit Network, India. From 2010 she has been part of several Social Audit Assignments – both corporates as well as not-for-profits in India.

Marie Banu has received the REX Karmaveer Global Fellowship 2014-15 and Karmaveer Chakra for her commendable work for the society.