» A Resource Center role (research, documentation, dissemination).
» An Advocacy role.
» A donor advisory and convening role.
Its primary constituency comprises organized donors (foundations, trusts and companies with an interest in social development), and government, though the ultimate constituency is NGOs, and through them the community as a whole.
SICP works to achieve these objectives through research, documentation and publication to disseminate the information so collected; workshops and conferences to disseminate ideas, build skills and promote networking; advocacy with government; motivational campaigns; and the establishment of a resource center.
It has, in the past, conducted several surveys of donor agencies, on charitable giving and fund raising in India, and on volunteering, as well as case studies of trusts and foundations, charitable organizations, NGOs and religious organizations on different aspects. The studies have culminated in several publications.
SICP brings out a bimonthly newsletter, ‘Sampradaan’ which reports on events, research, good practices and developments in Indian as well as global civil society.
The organization has been in the forefront of advocacy on behalf of the voluntary sector in India esp. in relation to tax and law reforms.
Finally it has conducted the first and one of its kind workshops for training professional staff of donor organizations.
In the first phase of its development it has, programmatically, concentrated on the “Give” part of its slogan, “ Give, Give Wisely”, building up knowledge about different types of donors and philanthropic practices, and simultaneously motivating all donors, individual and institutional.
In the coming years it plans to stress the “ Giving Wisely” aspect.
In sum, SICP sees its role as being that of an intermediary between donors and those who utilize resources, viz. NGOs; between government and civil society organizations.
Guided by Governing Council of five distinguished citizens from different walks of life, it has and continues to foster co-operation between the state, corporate sector and civil society organisations for purposes of philanthropy, and to build up a network among institutional donors.
A unique clearinghouse of information on national and international philanthropy it also acts as a catalyst for promotion of new ideas and concepts.
SICP carries out its activities from self generated funds, grants from institutional donors and donations from individuals. Among its past and present donors are the Ford Foundation, the Asia Foundation, the Aga Khan Foundation, the Japan Foundation, Sir Ratan Tata Trust, the Sir Dorab Tata Trust, the State Bank of India and HDFC, apart from several individual donors.