Archive for January, 2015

A Fund for Land Degradation Neutrality

Two billion hectares of degraded land worldwide – an area larger than South America – are currently available for rehabilitation.

Nearly 500 million hectares of two billion hectares of degraded land worldwide is abandoned agricultural land. An additional 12 million hectares of land are degraded every year by human activities. The Global Mechanism (GM) is a financial mechanism of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification that supports countries to mobilize financial resources and increase investments in sustainable land management, helping reverse, control and prevent desertification, land degradation and drought.

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Scaling Impact the Shujog way

Would you risk falling five storeys every day to making a living? He will!

A farmer climbs a coconut tree twice a day to harvest the sap necessary to make coconut palm sugar. His bare hands and knees are his climbing tools and in most rural undeveloped regions, there is no security of a safety strap or cable. Rubiyanto, an Indonesian farmer, is aware of the safety risks in harvesting coconut sugar, but what choice does he have? Without the small income from this job, how can he support his family? Rubiyanto comes from a small farming community in Yogyakarta, the same community that entrepreneur Lastiana Yuliandari comes from. Armed with knowledge from a previous career in business, Lastiana returned to Yogyakarta in 2009 with the aim of helping her community.

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Supporting at-risk children

As a child, Sharon (not her real name) underwent a traumatic experience, which led to her general ambivalence and pessimistic outlook towards life. Upon participating in the Equine-Assisted Learning (EQUAL) programme in Singapore, she shares her change with us below:

“In the past, I didn’t care about a lot of things. But now, I feel like I care for horses. This proves to me that I can care about something… I feel like I am in the sky while riding.”

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Being an ambassador for impact

“Throughout our history the deal was: We left the world a better place than we found it. That was progress. The wheel. The Rule of Law. Anything.” – From the film ‘The Age of Stupid’

To me that was exactly what getting involved in impact investing was all about – to ‘put my money where my mouth is’ and do something to better the world. Of course, this is a figurative statement, since I am not wealthy. But then impact investing shouldn’t only be for millionaires and above. Impact investing involves a lot more than just giving money to some passionate social entrepreneur to do the work. We can all contribute, no matter what social, political or monetary capital we possess. Perhaps the most valuable asset we can all invest is time, which is the one thing that makes us all equal. We all have limited time, so spending time on something that enriches the lives of others is perhaps more meaningful than just spending money on yourself.

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In conversation with Mr. Robert S. Harrison, CEO, Clinton Global Initiative

Running with the theme of ‘Our Impact Story’, the Impact Quarterly set out to interview Mr. Robert S. Harrison who shared Clinton Global Initiatives and his impact story.

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Bangladesh: A development story of the past; an impact investing story of the future

One Delta, 156,594,962 people, 26,000 NGOs, 600 Microfinance Institutions, 99th rank on the Social Progress Index (ahead of peer South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation [SAARC] countries: India, Pakistan and Nepal), Five Millennium Development Goals on track for achievement, – Bangladesh has made tremendous developmental progress in the last few decades.

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Mobilizing SMEs to catalyze growth in agriculture

Across Asia, along with addressing food security concerns, agriculture is an important source of livelihoods for more than 2.2 billion people; making it a sector of high importance for development agencies. For most economies in the developing Asia, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), including social enterprise (SEs) as a subset, have become crucial to creating impact and fostering growth, especially in sectors like agriculture.

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