What Does Sawa Do? Part 3- New Tools to Support Sawa...

What Does Sawa Do? Part 3- New Tools to Support Sawa Leaders (Microgrants)

An in depth needs assessment survey with Sawa Leaders revealed that creating virtual partnerships was not the most effective way to assist them in growing their solutions on the ground. The survey showed that Leaders were struggling to grow their projects to scale, and needed a long term solution that would support their work, allow them to become financially self reliant and replicate their projects in surrounding communities. Microgrants were identified as the most effective tool for achieving this goal in the short term!

In response, Sawa has developed an entirely new program that will allow funds to be donated directly to the Leaders, so that they can immediately grow their projects in surrounding communities. The Sawa Team will test the microgrant program with five leaders in Haiti in early Spring, 2011. If successful, the program will be implemented in other Sawa focus countries including Rwanda, Uganda and Zambia.

Through the program, Leaders will be able to apply for a maximum of 1,000 CD at a time. Their applications will outline how they intend to use the funds in accordance with one of Sawa’s five extreme poverty reduction themes. Once approved, individuals will be able to view and donate to the projects via the Sawa website. Western Union has partnered with Sawa World to provide their fund transfer infrastructure to allow the donated microgrants to reach the Sawa Leaders free of charge (no banking fees or any other administrative costs taken off).

In addition, a small fee will be added to the microgrants. This will be used to pay the Youth Journalists and local media partners to provide short video updates on the microgrant impacts and allow donors to see their donations at work. The process will create a new and very innovative way to connect donors to the impacts and beneficiaries via videos that will be posted on our website. Learn more about how Sawa is working with the Leaders to develop long term income opportunities next week in, What Does Sawa Do? Part 4!

What are your ideas to solve extreme poverty? Visit our discussion board to post your comments!