Through Shared Interest Foundation, we build the resilience of
businesses that are aiming to have both a financial and social
impact in their community. Our projects include support for fair
trade networks and the businesses they represent. We are also
increasingly focused on improving access to finance for those
businesses by providing financial training and mentoring
This year, we provided support through Shared Interest
Foundation to 130 businesses in 8 countries.
Since April 2013, we have been running an Access to Finance
project in Kenya, Ghana, Tanzania, Uganda and Ivory Coast, with
funding from Comic Relief. This has helped to improve business'
understanding of key financial concepts and how to apply them, as
well as assist in applying for loan finance.
SWIFT is our partner in Swaziland - a fair trade business
support network made up of a core of four staff and a Board of
experienced fair trade business leaders from the local community.
Together they support a network of 50 small businesses. We
delivered our 3½ year Comic Relief project supporting the Swaziland
craft industry with SWIFT. This project concluded in April
We made good progress in identifying how and what we will
measure to test the impact of Shared Interest Foundation, through
the development of a Theory of Change. This is a process requiring
reflection on how the activities you deliver lead to change, what
external factors affect this, and on what assumptions you are
basing your activities. We undertook a process of consultations
with project partners, businesses and beneficiaries in Swaziland,
Malawi and Kenya, as well as Shared Interest staff; a review of
external learning reports; an analysis of project evaluations and
dialogue with trustees.
You can read more about Business Support in