Funding: Institutions

Our Partners

Job creation model infographic – mobile

Content : visit a village in kenya – conclusion tab

Infographic: Members trained: 104,934 Our Self-Help Group members save together, train together and start businesses together

Members trained: 429

Target: 450


Businesses started: 323

Target: 300

india jobs icon

Jobs created: 408

Target: 400


Lives improved: 1,291

Target 1,500


Kithimani Schoolchildren

Once surviving, now thriving

Two years ago the people of Kithimani were subsistence farmers. Today they run profitable businesses growing maize, beans, oranges and mangoes, rearing chickens, goats and sheep, or running groceries and other shops. The money they earn is the difference between going to bed hungry and feeding their families three healthy meals a day, or watching their children crash out of school early versus paying secondary schools fees they previously couldn’t afford.

But the transformation hasn’t stopped in the home. Kithimani’s entrepreneur class is hiring its neighbors and boosting the local economy through increased spending. It’s also putting money aside at unprecedented rates, with average annual savings among Hand in Hand trainees topping US $100. Poor yields and unexpected hospital bills will never disappear in rural Kenya, but for the people of Kithimani, at least, the threat they pose will no longer be existential.

Voices from the community


Magdalene at home

Magdalene, poultry farmer and vegetable shop owner

Two years ago, Magdalene was a housewife with a small kiosk outside her home. Her monthly income was just US $20 a month, barely enough to feed her family one basic meal of maize and vegetables every day. Today, after completing Hand in Hand’s training, she earns US $150 a month rearing chickens and selling vegetables from her expanded shop.

“The training has given me skills, but most importantly it has changed my attitude. Today, my customers come from all over the village and beyond. I even use my mobile phone to secure orders for eggs and chickens from small hotels in the area. When before I would struggle to earn any income at all in the dry season, now that I have diversified beyond vegetables and fruit, I earn money all year round,” she says.

“I choose to spend my income on my children’s school fees to make sure they grow up to be responsible and successful people.”


Stella on her farm

Stella, farmer

“When Kelvin told me that farming can be a profitable business I did not believe him! Hand in Hand opened my eyes and suddenly I could see so many untapped resources which I could turn into a business.

“Now that I farm vegetables and rear chickens, I earn around Ksh 12,000 (USD $112) as profit a month. I also employ two part-time workers from my community to tend to my farm and deliver my produce to market. I am lucky that my daughter can now go to a private school. This means she doesn’t miss out on learning because teachers in private school don’t strike like they do in the public schools.”

What happens next

The limited duration of Hand in Hand’s programs is a defining characteristic of our work. Our aim is to help members help themselves, empowering them to break the cycle of dependency through their own nous and hard work. And so, after two years, we say goodbye.

At this point, we’re no longer needed.

More than 90 percent of members have started businesses that employ at least one person for at least 24 hours a week. Group leaders have the skills and confidence to tap markets outside Kithimani without Kelvin’s support. And a Village Development Committee (pictured) has been established to support members’ continued development.

But if the people of Kithimani have worked their way from subsistence to success, millions more in villages across Kenya could still benefit from our training. To learn more about how you can help, please click the link below.

klara blog Chapter 6



Chair: Myles Wickstead, CBE

Myles Wickstead is a Visiting Professor (International Relations) at King’s College London. From 1997 to 2000 he served on the Board of the World Bank in Washington, and was Britain’s Ambassador to Ethiopia and Djibouti from 2000 to 2004.


Laurie Lee – CEO, CARE UK

CARE developed the Savings Groups model in the early-1990s to close the credit gap among Niger’s rural poor. CARE UK CEO Laurie Lee considers savings groups, loans and financial inclusion for women and small women-owned businesses.


Josefine Lindänge Gutman – CEO, Hand in Hand International

From 2013 to 2016, Hand in Hand and CARE Rwanda teamed up to provide intensive business training to 130,000 Savings Group members. The partnership produced some hugely promising results, including a 75 percent increase in members’ average monthly incomes. As Hand in Hand prepares to expand in Tanzania, CEO Josefine Lindänge Gutman makes the case for business training achieved through partnerships.


Niclaus Bergmann – Managing Director, Savings Banks Foundation for International Cooperation (SBFIC)

Based in Bonn, SBFIC is the foundation of the largest banking group in Germany, with projects in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Caucasus region. Group Managing Director Niclaus Bergmann discusses the importance of strengthening financial inclusion from a supply perspective.


Laura Hemrika – Head of Corporate Citizenship & Foundations, Credit Suisse

Corporate Citizenship is Credit Suisse’s social commitment to enable inclusive growth, with a focus on education, microfinance and other key sectors. Credit Suisse Head of Corporate Citizenship & Foundations Laura Hemrika will speak about the experience of MFIs extending credit and financial education to women.

Themes: financial inclusion + job creation

Job creation

beyonce-job-creationThose in poverty do not lack initiative or energy; they lack opportunity. Hand in Hand International works
with the poor – predominantly women – in Africa and Asia to unlock entrepreneurship potential and help them to find a way up and out of poverty. Hand in Hand does this by providing business training, financial literacy, product development and market linkages.

Hand in Hand International CEO Josefine Lindänge Gutman will outline findings from a recent evaluation of a successful joint Hand in Hand-CARE project in Rwanda that aimed to create 80,000 sustainable jobs for women. The project resulted in significant increases in productivity and profitability among members – and an average rise in monthly income of 75 percent versus other VSLAs that did not get the training. Rwanda is an informative case study given the high level of female participation in the labor force and the government’s commitment to entrepreneurship and financial inclusion.

Content: country page Tanzania – why Tanzania


Tanzania is ranked 151 out of 188 on the UN Human Development Index, well into the lowest category of human development


47% of Tanzanians live on less than US $1.90 a day – almost all of them in rural areas like the ones we’ll be serving

info entrepreneurship club

At 70%, literacy levels are relatively high (Tanzania ranks 19th out of 52 African countries), meaning our training will have a quicker impact


Only 23% of Tanzania’s arable land is in use. The potential for smart and sustainable agricultural growth is huge

Expansion map

To start with, we’ll be focusing on two regions in the country’s northeast. Densely populated, relatively literate and demonstrating a strong appetite for entrepreneurship, Arusha and Moshi provide an ideal context for our work. They’re also just across the border from Kenya, home of Hand in Hand Eastern Africa.


klara blog chapter 5

klara blog chapter 4

Dr. Paul JanssenDr-Janssen 3, medical doctor and researcher, founded Janssen Pharmaceuticals in 1953 in Belgium. I haven’t had the chance to meet him in person, but some of my colleagues have, and described him as very passionate and keen on understanding the way diseases occur and progress. He was constantly working to deepen this knowledge and combine it with his great medical background to find new therapies and medical solutions for patients. It is said that he was very inspirational to people, which must be true. Though Janssen Pharmaceuticals was incorporated to Johnson & Johnson in 1961, the company did not lose its core ambition. Quite the contrary: today eight substances on the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) List of Essential Medicines have been developed by Janssen. Even though Dr. Paul Janssen passed away 2013, his spirit remains present and drives the company’s success.

Dr. Percy Barnevik: Put people’s destinies into their own hands

Dr. Percy BarnevikPercy extra LOWRES-8 bw 2, one of the most successful company leaders in Europe, started his “last, biggest and most important project” by co-founding Hand in Hand International in 2003. His vast experience in establishing and running companies still sets the tone at Hand in Hand. Although he stepped down as Chair in 2014. In his function as Honorary Chair he is still present in the office and continues to inspire the team. In my personal view he has a great character, combining a persuasive vision with a big emphasis on efficient execution. He is a very charismatic person and a successful networker, and he genuinely cares about people. In short, he possesses the characteristics required to make a difference in this world.

Courage and a hands-on-mentality lead to success

Both Dr. Paul Janssen and Dr. Percy Barnevik were/are very skilled, but skills are not enough. Ultimately, it was their strong ambition to act that helped them make a fundamental and lasting change for millions of people – a great gift, for themselves, their organisations and the world.

The Johnson & Johnson Corporate Citizenship Trust (Trust) Secondment Strategy program is an exciting and innovative program. It places selected J&J talent across the Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region in long-term assignments (up to six months) with trusted NGO partners, helping to strengthen their organisational capacity and outreach through skill-based volunteering.

Read more about the program here.

klara blog chapter 3

klaras blog chapter 2

Donate : legacy button

Legacy – By the numbers

Infographic: 1.66 million jobs created - Our Self-Help Group members save together, train together and go into business together

6,816 jobs created

Our Self-Help Group members save together, train together and go into business together

Infographic: 8.31 million lives improved - Every job we help create benefits an average five family members – young, old and everywhere in between

over 35,000 lives improved

Every business we help create benefits an average of five family members – young, old and everywhere in between

Infographic: Best-in-class efficiency - 90 cents of every dollar we raise is spent on programs. On average, the UK’s 10 biggest development NGOs spend $0.80

70% of funds to programs

70 cents of every dollar we raise is spent on programs.

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Content: EIF tab 6 (contact us)

Content: EIF tab 4 (Meet Jane)

Content : EIF tab 3 (Kenya)


Number of loans: 62,965


Total distributed: US $7.62 million


Repayment rate: 100%

Content: EIF tab 1 (The Fund)



20% of refugees arriving in Europe by sea are Afghan


Only 10% of Afghans are in regular, waged employment


The average working Afghan earns US $16 a month


Up to 44% of the families we work with are sometimes forced to skip meals

Moving forward

Creating a job in the developing world costs a fraction of what it does to resettle a refugee in Europe. In Afghanistan, a sustainable, life-changing job costs Hand in Hand £300 to create. In Germany, feeding, housing and providing language classes to a single refugee costs £8,800 per year.

Hand in Hand Afghanistan has helped create 26,739 businesses and 31,397 jobs, transforming the lives of some 197,000 people – most of them children. And we’re only getting started. In light of the ongoing refugee crisis, we are committed to expanding our operations in Afghanistan.

A message from John Kay, Financial Times

Content : Goals – The Big Picture tab




250 million jobs

arrow 2

1 billion lifted from the bottom of the pyramid

Across the developing world, informal small- and medium-sized enterprises dominate the economic landscape. In India, for example, home to Hand in Hand’s largest operation, informal jobs in agriculture, manufacturing and more account for 90 percent of GDP.

Clearly, the public and formal private sectors cannot and will not provide the 250 million jobs required to lift the bottom billion out of poverty.

Developing world employment by sector

where will jobs come from pie chart final

But for all its size and dynamism, the informal sector cannot overcome poverty on its own. A lack of capital and business knowledge, along with barriers to accessing microcredit and crucial larger markets, keep millions from realizing their potential. That’s where Hand in Hand comes in, providing would-be entrepreneurs with the skills and training they need to work their own way out of poverty – without fuelling the cycle of dependency.

In India, where our job creation model was first tried and tested, jobs cost as little as US $38 each to produce. In Afghanistan – our most challenging context, hampered by security concerns and difficult geography – that figure is approximately US $328. According to the Institute for the Study of Labor, other NGOs spend up to US $400 per person on training alone.

Water page – Kenya

Water page – India

Content: Visit village Kenya 12 month report

Kelvin Mulwa, trainer, and SHG │ Kithimani, Kenya

Kelvin Mulwa, trainer, with Self-Help-Group

You already know Kelvin Mulwa, the trainer supporting Kithimani, from our last two updates. Kelvin says his “most memorable and humbling experience was at the end of last year, when members were sharing the dividends from the group’s revolving fund. I could see the joy in the members’ eyes as each member got his or her share. This made me proud of the work I had done.”

By the numbers

One year in, nine groups have been mobilized, comprising 192 of the 450 villagers we plan to reach; 176 are women and 16 are men. Together they support 509 children. Groups meet every two weeks, and 164 women have completed the first module of our training, learning how to run their groups and manage collective savings. Every group keeps minutes of their meetings and a cash register to track their savings. These are the tools that will ensure they continue to save and thrive long after the support has ended.

The second module, ‘savings training’, has been completed by 148 members, all of whom have started to save. At the moment their personal savings are low, ranging from 200 KES (US $2) to KES 14,000 (US $16). This is the first time many have set money aside, given that most must provide for four children or more on an average income of US $2.30 a day.

The power of learning

Most members (124 out of 192) in Kithimani have a maximum four years of education. The support they receive provides a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to catch up on the skills they need to break the cycle of poverty and improve their children’s future opportunities.

The third module, ‘enterprise training’, is being completed by 129 villagers. Lessons include how to earn money from pre-existing skills or assets, how to differentiate oneself from the competition, how to set prices and more.

Former CEO of Microsoft Steve Ballmer famously said, “what gets measured gets done”. This applies to Kithimani’s aspiring business owners every bit as much as it does to the world’s biggest companies. Seventy-six members have already moved on to the fourth module, ‘financial skills training’, where they are learning basic bookkeeping. This skill enables them to manage their costs, separate their household expenses from their business costs and calculate whether they’re making a profit.



Catherine  Wanza │ Clothes vendor │ Kithimani, Kenya

Catherine Wanza │ Clothes vendor │ Kithimani, Kenya

Rhoda Munywoki │ Greengrocer  │ Kithimani, Kenya

Rhoda Munywoki │ Greengrocer │ Kithimani, Kenya

Voices from the village program

Rhoda Munywoki (left) started a greengrocer selling produce to the local community. After completing all four training modules, Rhoda said: “Since I started keeping records in my business, I have seen tremendous change. Now I can account for every cost incurred in my business and I know how much return it is producing. With the records I keep, I can plan much better than before. It’s made me realize that I need to sell a greater variety of fruits to increase my income.”

Mercy Wambua (right) sells detergents. “In the past six months I have learned how to manage my debts,” she says. ‘I started selling liquid soap in my village and that has been a great second income. I want to start supplying detergents to the secondary schools around the village to increase my sales.”

What’s next?

Kelvin has a busy 12 months ahead of him. First he must recruit the remaining 258 members, then graduate all 450 from Hand in Hand’s ‘grassroots MBA’. Criss-crossing the dust roads on his motorbike, Kelvin will ensure every member acquires the vital business and financial skills they need, including how to market their products beyond their neighbourhood.

Mercy Wambua │ Detergent seller │ Kithimani, Kenya

Mercy Wambua │ Detergent seller │ Kithimani, Kenya

In a poor village like Kithimani, businesses can never grow past a certain level. That is why we aim to equip the women and men and of Kithimani with the means to secure larger sales in neighboring Matuu, the largest town in the vicinity.

Voices from the village program

Content: Visit village India February 2015

Twelve months in, our project in Paramesvaramangalam is beginning to take hold. Six Village Development Committee meetings have been conducted, paving the way for major change in the village.


Tamarind fruit extraction | Paramesvaramangalan, India

A Self-Help Group working on tamarind fruit extraction

Self-Help Groups and Microfinance

Eighteen women Self-Help Groups (SHGs) have been formed so far, counting 253 members. More than 160 members have received basic training in capacity-building, and 77 have received microloans totalling INR 1,245,000 (US $6,000) from Hand in Hand to launch their businesses. An additional INR 850,000 (US $12,840) was disbursed by banks.

Awareness rally on child labor | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Child labor awareness rally

Child Labor Elimination Project

One child labor awareness rally was conducted, attended by 120 people, and 25 pupils have been begun attending a new Children’s Learning Center.

Meeting at the citizens' centre | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Citizens’ Center meeting

Citizens’ Center

Twenty-five people received e-literacy training at Hand in Hand’s Citizens’ Center, bringing the total to 259. Another 15 attended computer courses. Three awareness programs were conducted on India’s Right to Information Act, attended by 148 people.

Medical camp | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Medical camp


Three mass awareness programs were conducted on nutrition and sanitation, attended by 392 people. Another 243 attended five awareness meetings on basic health and personal hygiene. One general medical camp was conducted, benefiting 164 people. An ophthalmology camp benefited 44.

A veterinary camp was also conducted, treating 996 animals.

Educating about organic farming | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Organic farming education


Four awareness programs were conducted to sensitize villagers on protecting the environment and vermicomposting (the practice of composting using worms). Seven mass village cleaning camps were also conducted. The environment was improved with the planting of 20 avenue trees and 20 kitchen garden units. Another 430 horticulture plants were distributed to individual households.

A village sponsor’s testimonial

Tab: Child Labor Elimination Program

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Tab: Young Mothers Program

ft Hand in Hand in the media

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Jobs and security

While Hand in Hand Zimbabwe’s principle motive is to alleviate poverty, jobs also improve security and stability in the regions where we work. This is particularly true in areas that have recently suffered some form of violence. Studies suggest persistent unemployment makes individuals significantly more susceptible to rebel recruitment, as they perceive there to be no non-violent means of earning a living. In a global survey conducted by the World Bank in 2011, 39.5 percent of the members of rebel groups that were interviewed claimed unemployment and idleness were their principle motivations for joining.

By the numbers


World Bank World Development Report, 2011

39.5% of the members of rebel groups interviewed claimed unemployment and idleness were their principle motivation for joining

Infographic: Members trained: 51,956 Our Self-Help Group members save together, train together and start businesses together

World Bank World Development Report, 2011

70% of Afghans think unemployment is a major factor driving the current conflict


African Development Bank Group: Youth Unemployment and Political Instability in Selected Developing Countries

When 15- to 24-year-olds make up more than 35% of the adult population, the risk of armed conflict is 150% higher than in countries with older populations


The Challenge

The greatest security related challenge in the regions where we work is that posed by youth unemployment. Even in countries experiencing economic growth, the number of youth entering the labour force is far greater than the number of new job opportunities being created each year. A 2013 report by the African Development Bank found that developing countries with large numbers of unemployed young people are considerably more likely to suffer some form of civil violence than those with lower levels of youth unemployment. A lack of jobs may leave young people feeling as if they have no choice but to join a rebellion as a means of generating an income. Conversely, those that are able to find employment become more invested in political stability and face a greater opportunity cost from joining a rebellion.

Case Study: Afghanistan

Of all the countries where Hand in Hand works, Afghanistan has experienced the most severe civil conflict in recent ­­­­­­times. Beset by political instability and vast tracts of mountainous terrain, the country is incredibly difficult to police, providing a fertile ground for rebel groups to recruit young people. In a recent survey, 7% of Afghans said a lack of jobs was the principle reason they may support the goals of rebel groups in their region. Meanwhile, in another survey, 70% said unemployment and poverty were major factors driving the current conflict.

Youth unemployment in Afghanistan

In Afghanistan, 15- to 24-year-olds constitute 40 percent of the total population, increasing the risk of armed conflict in the country by 150% in comparison to countries with flatter age structures. Through our program in Afghanistan, Hand in Hand is able to help tackle the issue of unemployment, thereby reducing the appeal of joining a rebel group and helping to facilitate a more politically stable environment.

Beyond 2014

jobs and security Afghanistan

The threat of rising unemployment has been heightened by the withdrawal of foreign troops at the end of 2014. Not only has their withdrawal reduced the security assurances in the region, it has also resulted in a significant loss of jobs as those working for foreign security and civilian organizations, as well as Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRT), are laid off. Estimates of the number of jobs at risk range from 50,000 to 360,000 when all those employed by service providers and other contractors are taken into account.

Afghanistan’s insecurity, mountainous terrain and political instability make it the most challenging location in which we work, and, as a result, the one that needs our commitment the most. So far, we’ve trained more than 22,000 Self-Help Group members and created almost 8,500 jobs in the country. And we’re just getting started.

Content : Visit village India – Since August 2014 tab

We are now six months into the project, which began when Hand in Hand India conducted a survey to identify existing services and problems in the Panchayat. Through this exercise, we were able to map the demographics of the community and develop a plan for fighting poverty most effectively.


Even at this early stage we’ve been able to achieve significant improvements in the areas highlighted as requiring intervention by the village mapping exercise.

Village Development Committee Formed

Our field team formed a village development committee to involve and engage the community in planning the activities to be implemented under the VUP.

Participatory Rural appraisal (PRA)-village mapping exercise done along with the community| Paramesvaramangalan, India

Participatory Rural appraisal (PRA)-village mapping exercise | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Livestock health care camp | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Livestock health care camp | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Self-Help Groups and Microfinance

Hand in Hand India mobilized 14 Self-Help Groups that currently have a total of 202 members. So far, 161 members have received basic business and financial training.  A total of INR 850,000 has been loaned to 25 family based enterprises, and we have also been able to hold a veterinary camp in which 996 animals were treated.

Awareness rally by school children on child labor | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Awareness rally by school children on child labor | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Child Labour Elimination Project

Our field team has helped to run two awareness campaigns and a rally as part of our aim of ensuring 100 percent school enrolment for children aged 6 to 14 within the Panchayat.

E- Learning programme : School Childern are taught on the basics of computer | Paramesvaramangalan, India

E- Learning programme : School Childern are taught on the basics of computer | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Citizens’ Center

Hand in Hand India has created a Citizens’ Center in the village which is providing the community with a vital access point for many state benefits. Having established internet access, the Center has held e-learning classes for 234 members of the community.


Paediatric medical camp | Paramesvaramangalan, India



Hand in Hand India provided a free medical camp for the village in which 164 people received treatment.  The camp also enabled our field team to promote better sanitation and health practices across the community.

Waste management

Waste management


As planned, we have been able to run two awareness campaigns on environment protection and vermicomposting, as well as organize three mass village-cleaning camps.

A village sponsor’s testimonial

Content : Visit village India – Before August 2014 tab

Villagers attending the official Hand in Hand program launch | Paramesvaramangalam village |Tamil Nadu, India

Village program launch | Paramesvaramangalam village |Tamil Nadu, India

On 14 February, Hand in Hand India staff met with local leaders, ward members, Self-Help Group members, school teachers and youths. They
discussed their participation in the VUP program and professed their support.

Three days later the program was officially launched. Hundreds of community members visited Hand in Hand stalls to learn about the program, then settled in for a performance featuring street theatre and dances geared towards explaining Hand in Hand India’s five focus activities. Local leaders and Self-Help Group members signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Hand in Hand staff, symbolizing their commitment to the program.

What happens next?

No two villages are the same – and neither are any two Village Uplift Programs. Work is underway now to complete a ‘participatory rural appraisal’ of Paramesvaramangalam, a process that involves surveying villagers to discover what they think their community needs most. The results will impact precisely how we implement the program. Broadly, however, we’ll be working in five tried and tested focus areas.

Tamarind processing | Paramesvaramangalan, India

Tamarind processing | Paramesvaramangalan, India

1. Job creation

Our job creation model will help hundreds of women entrepreneurs start businesses such as tailoring, bicycle repair and shopkeeping. We’ll also run veterinary camps to provide timely medical help to the milk-giving animals in the village, helping dairy entrepreneurs and the village in general.

School | Tamil Nadu, India

School | Tamil Nadu, India

2. Child labour elimination and access to education

Our field team has already begun visiting every family in the village to identify child workers. When we find them, we’ll work our absolute hardest to get them into school. We’ll also pay for evening tuition. Our goal is to ensure 100 percent school enrolment for children aged 6 to 14.

Citizens' center | Tamil Nadu, India

Citizens’ center | Tamil Nadu, India

 3. Citizens’ Center

Hand in Hand India’s Citizens’ Center will provide internet access – a vital access point for many state benefits – for the very first time. It will also host sessions on civic rights, such as the right to free education, which many in Paramesvaramangalam do not know exist.

Health Center | Tamil Nadu, India

Health Center | Tamil Nadu, India

 4. Health

Besides promoting better sanitation and health practices across the community, we’ll give free medical examinations conducted by professional doctors and nurses to the most vulnerable villagers. Further down the line, we’ll provide microloans to those who want to build toilets.

Villagers collecting wood to make firecoal |Paramesvaramangalam |Tamil Nadu, India

Villagers collecting wood to make firecoal |Paramesvaramangalam |Tamil Nadu, India

5. Environment

We’re just weeks away from beginning organic farming training courses and commencing waste collection services.

Village development committee | Tamil Nadu, India

Village development committee | Tamil Nadu, India

6. Village Development Committee

We also plan to mobilize local volunteers and village elders to help deliver the program by forming a Village Development Committee.

A village sponsor’s testimonial

Content : Visit village Kenya – Oct 2014 tab

By the numbers

Six months into the project, we’ve mobilized six groups comprised of 138 members, only 12 of them men. We favor women for one simple reason: when women earn more, they’re more likely than men to spend on their children’s food, housing, health and education.

The oldest group member in Kithimani is 88-year-old farmer Louisa Kilovoo. The youngest is 25-year-old Mary Kanini Mutiso, also a farmer.

Learning and saving together

Every group meets on a weekly basis. Five are learning how to function more effectively and start savings funds. Disciplines include keeping minutes and appointing a cash register to note savings will help them allocate loans and support each other’s ventures.

Kelvin Mulwa

Kelvin Mulwa

A few villagers have started to save, most for the first time in their lives. (Putting money aside is rarely a priority when caring for several children on an average US $2.30 a day.) At the moment savings are low, ranging from 200 Kenyan Shillings (KES), worth just over US $2, to KES 14,000 (US $ 16). Field Officer Kelvin Mulwa (pictured right) is working to raise them.

kithamani tomatoes

Kithamani tomatoes

Business as un-usual

The climate in Kithimani is dry, but most people have only farming to rely on. Our group members are no exception: 109 of the 138 grow and sell staple crops including maize, beans and other vegetables.

Having been introduced to more modern farming techniques, many will now move from the hand-to-mouth existence of subsistence farming to selling surplus crops. Keeping livestock is also popular. Six of the villagers participating in Hand in Hand’s training have livestock of some sort. Others activities include charcoal production, knitting and running a grocery stall.

The business skills the villagers will learn over the next year, from book-keeping to marketing, will apply no matter their profession. They will know whether they have set prices for their produce at the right level, and if they are making a profit.

Luisah Kilovoo, the oldest Kithimani group member, was one of the first to take the business training and is living proof it is never too late to learn. “Now I know whether I am making a profit or a loss on the chickens and rabbits I keep and the oranges I grow,” she says.

Voices from the village program

Content : Visit village Kenya – April 2014 tab

Victor Ablonda |Kithamani village| Machakos county, Kenya

Victor Ablonda |Kithamani village| Machakos county, Kenya

Victor Ablonda (pictured left), one of Hand in Hand’s most experienced Business Relationship Officers in the region, has already spent hours criss-crossing the roads in and around Kithimani to recruit 450 Self-Help Group members for training.

Once Victor is satisfied that the groups are committed to the training, we formally include them in the program and establish a business training schedule. Within two months, Victor had already mobilized three groups, counting 72 members altogether. The majority of members, 66, are women.

One such group (pictured right) has already started operating a so-called ‘merry-go-round’ savings fund that each member pays into weekly, and which each member can access – with the group’s approval – to help finance a business.

The group looks forward to receiving Hand in Hand business and skills training over the coming weeks and months.

“I know from experience that training the people of Kithimani in business skills will really empower them to see earning opportunities other than farming,” says Victor.

Members of the Kithuluni Farmers Self-Help Group sitting during meeting | Kithimani |Machakos county, Kenya

Members of the Kithuluni Farmers Self-Help Group meet to discuss their savings fund | Kithimani |Machakos county, Kenya

Voices from the village program

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Total COTY funds raised in 2013 (£1.7 million) divided by 2 (number of charities each year) dived by 54 (pounds per job created in Kenya)

15,000 jobs

“Development happens through jobs,” says the World Bank. Our entrepreneurs make their own success, breaking the cycle of dependency


75,000 lives improved

Every job we help create in Kenya benefits an average five family members – children especially


Infographic: Best-in-class efficiency - 90 cents of every dollar we raise is spent on programs. On average, the UK’s 10 biggest development NGOs spend $0.80

Based on Guardian datablog charity donations list (minus FACE ratios for The Gavi Fund Affiliate and International Finance Facility for Immunisation Company)

90% program spending

90 pence of every pound we raise is spent on programs. On average, the UK’s 10 biggest development NGOs spend £0.80

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Content : Work – Where we work 1

Woman making charcoal clay

Martha Kimuyu Kinai | Clay Maker | Mumandu | Kenya


Gloria Kabagwira | Organic produce farmer | Mpanga Kirehe | Rwanda


Naomi Masilo | Shop owner | Gauteng Province | South Africa

Naomi Masilo | Shop owner | Gauteng Province | South Africa

South Africa

Woman painting Terracotta Dolls

Zaineb |Farmer | Afghanistan

Zaineb |Farmer | Afghanistan

Afghanistan                                                     India












content : consultancy tab

content : jobs tab

content : volunteering tab

Content : EIF – By the numbers

info-white-loans-repaid2% annual fixed interest

You’ll receive your interest in Kenyan Shillings (KES).

Infographic: 1.16 million members trained11,500 jobs

“Development happens through jobs,” says the World Bank. Our entrepreneurs make their own success, breaking the cycle of dependency

Infographic: Lives improved: 278,090 Every job we help create in Kenya benefits an average five family members – young, old and everywhere in between57,000 improved lives

When women find work, entire families benefit

info-white-loans-repaid2% annual fixed interest

You’ll receive your interest in Kenyan Shillings (KES).

Infographic: 1.16 million members trained11,500 jobs

“Development happens through jobs,” says the World Bank. Our entrepreneurs make their own success, breaking the cycle of dependency

Infographic: Lives improved: 278,090 Every job we help create in Kenya benefits an average five family members – young, old and everywhere in between57,000 improved lives

When women find work, entire families benefit

Content : EIF – the small print

By the numbers

Every US $100,000 equivalent you invest will produce:


2% annual fixed account

You’ll receive your interest in Kenyan Shillings (KES)

Infographic: 1.16 million members trained

11,500 jobs

“Development happens through jobs,” says the World Bank. Our entrepreneurs make their own success, breaking the cycle of dependency

Infographic: Lives improved: 278,090 Every job we help create in Kenya benefits an average five family members – young, old and everywhere in between

57,000 improved lives

When women find work, entire families benefit