Village Enterprise Fund's mission is to break the cycle of poverty in East Africa through training, seed capital and mentoring for income-generating small businesses. They have staff in Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda, employing a grassroots model of economic development.
The organization combines education, finance and mentoring to create sustainable income-generating businesses. Their business training empowers groups of five or more to select, create and operate small businesses. The training covers:
- Assessing the market for the product or service
- Marketing skills
- Re-investing profits for growth
- Basic record keeping
- Group dynamics and decision making
- Confidence building
Seed capital grants of $100 or $150 go to trained groups with approved grant applications. The grants are provided in two installments. The first installment is for operation start up; the second upon approval based on a progress report showing profits and revenue. Rural start-up businesses include:
- Agriculture (maize, cassava, tomatoes, peanuts)
- Animal husbandry (goats, chickens, pigs)
- Skilled service and construction (tailoring, carpentry, welding, bicycle repair)
- Retail (vegetable kiosks, restaurants and cafes, household goods)
Village Enterprise Fund provides personalized advice and encouragement for at least one year, as part of their on-going mentoring. This coaching helps new entrepreneurs gain confidence, overcome the typical challenges of a new venture, understand local market opportunities, become self-sufficient and grow their businesses.
Empowerment grants of $300 go to our most successful entrepreneurs. These incremental investments take an existing business to a new level.
In the past year the organization has transformed 70,925 lives. For more information on how you can help, please visit Village Enterprise Fund's website.