EverGift Successfully Completes First Loan in the Dominican Republic
Miami, Florida (June 26, 2015) – EverGift is proud to announce the successful completion of their first loan in the Dominican Republic. Founded by Matt Wanderer and Michael Douroux in 2008, EverGift lends donor and sponsor dollars to organizations allowing for an increase in small-loans to social entrepreneurs. Their latest investment empowered a group of young women in the Dominican Republic to launch their own private company, called Cuidame DR, which provides nanny and elderly care services to their community
Recent graduates of the DREAM Project’s A Ganar program, these 8 young women completed a 6 month training course in both health care and entrepreneurship, developing capacity in first aid, first response, early childhood education, hospice services, all while improving their fluency in English. In conjunction with DREAM and the DR Ministry of Health, these young entrepreneurs formed their own business, creating a marketing strategy, organizational structure, business plan and eventual employment.
Jonathan Wunderlich, Executive Development Advisor, worked closely on this project and declared, “The partnership between EverGift and DREAM, in particular Cuidame, has been a perfect example of how a small group of young entrepreneurs can participate in an innovative training, create a business model and make it happen. This process starts with desire for change, then self-motivation, training and finally, the critical component, a modest investment financially. All of these components are critical, but that final act of faith, the loan, pushes an idea into action. This is what EverGift has done, take an idea, inspire a group of disadvantaged women and make a dream come true!”
Through participating in Cuidame , the young women were all offered full time employment, reaching their goal and fulfilling their ultimate dream. Joana Camacho, a participant in the program proclaimed, “Cuidame has been a great experience for me, as it has developed my sense of responsibility and educated me on the value of things…DREAM & EverGift together formed an important part of my professional development, giving me the opportunity to learn a trade, at the same time launching my own business.” Along with their full-time jobs, the young women continue to manage Cuidame, and exemplify a true success story for EverGift and the social entrepreneurship initiative.
HAND IN HAND, TAMIL NADU, INDIA
Hand in Hand is a Public Charitable Trust registered in the year 2002 with an initial focus on child labour elimination, education, and the empowerment of women. The organization has been in operation since 1988 in Kancheepuram District, Tamil Nadu, India. With time, their activities expanded per the demands from the rural communities in which they were working, and have come to include poverty reduction interventions in rural communities. HiH envisions a strategy that addresses the challenges of poverty and underdevelopment. It aim to build self-reliance among disadvantaged groups by alleviating poverty through sustainable income generating programs.
The ‘Jobs for Growth’ program from Hand in Hand links parent program ‘Self-Help Groups’ to banks to facilitate fair financial inclusion for entrepreneurs. When bank loans are inaccessible, insufficient, too costly, or too rigid, Hand in Hand tries to bridge the gap by proving low-cost credit for enterprise creation.
Hand in Hand believes that when loans are given to women for asset creation and income generation, it increases their status and strengthens their position in the family. Consequently, as women are empowered household poverty is reduced, and the health and education standards in the family increase. Furthermore, with the creation of enterprises, women migrate from poorly paid work to self-employment and financial independence.
A 2-year EverGift loan sponsored by TRIUM Legacy Fund.
Since Hand In Hand (HiH) was established in 2002, their unique Five Pillar approach has created 1,421,292 jobs. This year, TRIUM and EverGift have teamed up to provide HiH a $10k loan that will work to solve a specific problem in the community.
Hand in Hand identified their goal to ‘help women from HiH Self-Help Groups to scale up their enterprises‘. HiH had discovered a failure in small business financing in the region — a “missing middle” comprised of women who run medium-sized enterprises. These businesswomen are highly underserved in regard to access to loan capital. Their enterprises are too large for simple micro-loan products that HiH and other MFIs have had available, but can not be served by the formal banking sector because they lack the collateral required.
HiH set out to create a medium-sized loan that requires no collateral, a much more appropriate loan product for this “missing middle”. In providing this marginalized demographic with access to capital, this new HiH loan product fills a real need not previously addressed by market forces, government programs or other NGOs.
HiH identified 10 women from the regions of Kanchipuram and Chengalput to which HiH will loan 50,000INR, enough to create significant growth in a medium-sized enterprise. Chosen for their experience and training, these ten women are engaged in various kinds of micro enterprises such as tailoring, doll-making, and screen-printing. Each loan is to be repaid in 24 monthly installments at the rate of 15% interest on reducing balance basis.
BRICK BY BRICK CONSTRUCTION, KALISIZO, UGANDA
Throughout sub-Saharan Africa bricks are made using mud baked in wood burning kilns. This practice is environmentally destructive in two ways. First, it requires 1 ton of firewood to make 1,000 bricks, that’s about two average size trees! Using wood-fired bricks is a major contributor to de-forestation in Africa. Secondly, to obtain the mud for these bricks, wetlands are being drained, destroying another essential eco-system. Interlocking Stabilized Soil Bricks utilizes a brick press, using muram or sub-soil instead of mud. The bricks created are interlocking, therefore structurally stronger and requiring much less cement for construction. This saves money and more importantly, saves precious and rapidly disappearing natural resources in Uganda.
Brick improvement was a success. In February of 2011 after close to a year of research Brick by Brick commenced a social entrepreneurial pilot project, Brick by Brick Construction. Our principle objective was to test the feasibility of our non-profit organization managing a ‘for profit’ construction company, initially focusing on the manufacture of rainwater harvesting tanks. Rainwater harvesting tanks were chosen as an important mission of the new business because they provide clean water, drastically reducing time spent to acquire water daily and supporting the local economy by employing workers to build structures.
The pilot project proved successful. Since its founding Brick by Brick Construction has employed 9 full time masons paid a fair, living wage; constructed 34 rainwater harvesting tanks throughout Uganda ranging from 10,000-30,000 liters; built multiple school buildings, libraries and sanitation systems in each of our participating schools and turned a profit in each of its 3 years.
Brick by Brick and EverGift come together in 2014 to provide rainwater harvesting tanks to communities that do not have lump capital available or do not have access to micro-loans. Together the organizations will give 10 loans over the course of two years and provide rainwater harvest tanks to thousands of Ugandans who lack access to clean water.