What does it take to fight poverty at the root?
This past year, we released a new strategy outlining our focus on three root causes of global poverty around the world: climate change; food insecurity; and unemployment, particularly for youth.
Our 2022 Annual Report shows the tremendous impact possible when women and men fighting poverty around the world build the skills, confidence, and connections to overcome these challenges. In 2022, TechnoServe’s work with these individuals resulted in the following impact:
This year, we are also introducing a new “Better Jobs” metric. Decent work is key to economic and political stability, especially with 90% of the world’s youth living in low- or lower-middle-income countries. Millions of stable, reliable jobs need to be created in order to provide these young people with a decent future.
While TechnoServe’s work has always contributed to new or better job opportunities, we are now systematically measuring this impact across our entrepreneurship programs–and hope to expand this measurement across all our programs in the future.
In 2022, TechnoServe helped to strengthen, fill, or create 32,460 jobs around the world.
This year’s report also includes exciting updates on our regenerative business work, as well as highlights from the past year, and a report on our provisional 2022 financial figures. And as always, we take you inside our impact numbers with stories like the ones below.
Creating Environment-Friendly Jobs for Women and Youth
Like many cities around the world, Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, has struggled to manage pollution from plastic, paper, and other contaminants. The amount of solid waste generated by the city’s growing population is increasing by 5% every year, risking contamination of waterways and other environments.
However, with this challenge comes an opportunity for enterprising people.
Halima Awol is one such person. A former tailor, Halima was unable to return to work after giving birth to her first child, leaving her family to rely solely on her husband’s low salary. But that changed when she discovered a new business training program.
TechnoServe trains young people and women like Halima through the LIWAY program, funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), helping them create better economic opportunities through environmentally sustainable means. One of these opportunities was a regenerative business solution to the litter problem in Addis Ababa: waste collection and recycling. Altogether, TechnoServe has helped women and youth to start 117 waste-collection micro-entreprises, which collect solid waste to sell to larger recycling firms.
And now, Halima is one of them. Joining with seven other women, she started the Aman and Halima Recycling Association, and now makes roughly $130 a month, once an almost unimaginable sum. “I am now able to support my family,” she says.
Her association has been able to save more than $4,500 towards investments and business expansion, and has hired hundreds of young people to collect plastic waste, giving them the opportunity to improve their incomes on a daily basis.
Altogether, the program has helped create nearly 6,000 new jobs and to strengthen over 8,000–half of which are for women. It’s another way that regenerative business approaches are helping fight poverty and environmental degradation at the same time.
Dairy Farmers Increase Incomes and Reduce Emissions
Cattle contribute roughly 11% of all human-induced greenhouse gas emissions–but they can be a crucial source of income for people working to escape poverty. Jaime Cortés is one of them.
Jaime and his father run a small dairy farm in Jalisco, Mexico. They worked hard to turn a profit, but ran into rough times in 2014. At times, they worried their business might not be able to survive.
Soon, however, the Cortes family discovered a way to turn their dairy farm around. They soon joined a program where TechnoServe, in partnership with Danone’s Ecosystem Fund and UNAM (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México), was helping hundreds of dairy farmers in Mexico to improve their incomes through more productive, sustainable dairy farming and business practices.
In addition to better business and farming skills, Jaime also learned how to improve the environmental sustainability of his farm, through practices like changing cattle diets to produce less methane; reforesting land; and installing solar panels, among other methods.
Altogether, this initiative has helped small-scale dairy farmers in Mexico to nearly triple their incomes, while reducing their farms’ carbon emissions by 13%. They have a more reliable market, too. Danone Mexico now buys 24% of its milk in Mexico from these small-scale producers–including the Cortes family.
Applying their new skills and knowledge, the family is now reliably turning a profit from their dairy farm. Among the environmental and economic benefits: solar panels on their roof. “We haven’t paid an electricity bill in four years,” reports Jaime.
This model of supporting small-scale producers to make changes that are both economically and environmentally beneficial is at the core of TechnoServe’s regenerative business strategy–and a necessary model for addressing the twin problems of poverty and climate change.
“[This] is a very good social program for small producers like me,” Jaime Cortés reflects. “With this kind of project, you secure your future and your well-being.”
Read the Full 2022 Annual Report from TechnoServe
TechnoServe’s work is making a difference in communities around the world by creating sustainable solutions to poverty and environmental degradation. From helping women farmers increase their incomes to improving food fortification and reducing emissions in the dairy industry, TechnoServe is committed to making a lasting impact.
Read the full 2022 Annual Report and join us in our mission to fight poverty and create a better world through regenerative business practices.