BUILDING BUSINESSES FROM GRASS ROOTS UP
Shared Interest Foundation was established in 2004 as a charitable subsidiary of Shared Interest Society. Our aim is to work with producers who need support to grow and be more sustainable, ultimately alleviating poverty by helping people to trade and earn a living.
We share our core values with Shared Interest Society, and they reflect the principles of love, justice and stewardship:
- Work co-operatively with our members as we take and share risk.
- Value and engage our donors and supporters
- Encourage the commitment, talents and energy of our staff in an environment of mutual respect.
- Work to recognised fair trade standards.
- Respect the diversity of different cultures.
- Place partnership at the heart of what we do.
Visit our projects page to read about our current projects in Africa and Latin America.View Projects
Believing Business can Break Barriers
Due to the unique circumstances of each rural community and business, we collaborate with in-country partners to create and deliver support across Africa and Latin America. We work from grassroots up and a fundamental part of this is building resilience through the development of strategic planning, financial management and leadership skills as well as climate change mitigation and adaptation.
We believe strong, well-managed businesses create employment opportunities and increase the income of their producers, improving their quality of life. Our Theory of Change indicates how our sustainability interventions can shape positive change. It helps in project development, informs our monitoring and provides a framework for impact assessment.
Our Three Pillars of Impact
Working in partnership with local organisations, we implement projects that aim to:
- Strengthen the resilience and sustainability of co-operatives, supporting thousands of farmers and artisans.
- Increase the business and agricultural skills of producers and artisans to improve product quality, output and resilience to climate change.
- Support the development of sustainable, income-generating enterprises to improve livelihoods, reduce poverty and empower women and young people.
These Sustainable Development Goals are embedded in our mission and values:
1: No Poverty
5: Gender Equality
8: Decent work and Economic Growth
9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
12: Responsible Consumption and Production
13: Climate Action
17: Partnership for the Goals
To achieve our aims and ensure our work supports these Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we established three pertinent themes to address through our projects. These are: 'Developing Sustainable Enterprises', 'Empowering Women and Youth' and 'Building Climate Resilience'. By anchoring our work around these three pillars, we can maximise the impact of our projects by equipping smallholder farmers and craftspeople with the vital skills and resources necessary to lift them out of poverty and build their resilience for the future.
A Record-Breaking 2023
"It has been a year of achievement for Shared Interest Foundation, as we delivered a record number of projects across six countries."
~ Shared Interest Chair, Dr. Yvonne Gale, in an excerpt from our 2023 Annual Review. Read it here.
In 2023, over 800 women have received training through the Foundation in a range of topics including agro-processing, soilless farming, Climate Smart Agriculture, business skills and leadership. In Ivory Coast and Rwanda, we provided training, tools and farming inputs to help over 200 young farmers establish sustainable cocoa and coffee farms. Additionally, 143,269 trees were planted including coffee seedlings, agroforestry trees and fruit trees supporting 1,423 coffee farmers.
Winner of the Charity Times Award 2022
Partnership plays a huge part in all of our projects and it is only with the support of partners, colleagues, volunteers, donors, and grants from trusts and foundations that we are able to continue to support the talents of rural businesses.
These achievements were recognised by the Charity Times Awards, where Shared Interest Foundation was named Charity of the Year with an income of less than £1 million. These prestigious awards celebrate outstanding efforts within the voluntary sector.
Pictured: TradeAID Integrated, basket weaver, Akolgo Abaah.
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