Funding Through Partnerships
Often times, corporates such as financial institutions, can be strong partners who have aligned interests in economically empowering girls in particular communities. Standard Chartered Bank, with support from Women Win, launched an innovation fund called the Goal Employability and Entrepreneurship Fun (“Goal Fund”). The Goal Fund aims to support innovative projects that increase the income-generating, entrepreneurship, and employability opportunities of Goal Girls.
The Goal Fund is open only to Goal implementing partners, which are funded by Standard Chartered Bank and provides funding for these organisations to develop innovative projects that support girls to generate income, manage their earnings responsibly with financial service products and become economic actors in their own communities.
Many sport programmes rely on year-to-year funding. This makes stable funding one of the most challenging aspects of developing and sustaining an economic empowerment initiative as part of a sport programme. For this, and other reasons, many organisations will prefer to engage partners for economic empowerment initiatives. If the organisation chooses to develop its own initiative, it is recommended to find a primary source of funding for a 2 to 3-year duration, due to the set-up time required. An economic empowerment initiative can be an opportunity to challenge your organisation to consider peer leadership to reduce costs, diversify financing approaches, and extend your partnerships with other community based organisations, as well as with government agencies and private sector businesses.
- Fundraising (grants, donations, in-kind contributions). Most programmes rely heavily on philanthropic funding such as grants, donations, and in-kind contributions. Little long-term data is available to prove the return on investment, as sport programmes for girls are still relatively new. However, the peer leader approach to lowering costs and scaling impact can differentiate your sport programme proposal in the competitive grant funding landscape and potentially open up new categories of funders.
- Self-Financing/Income generation strategies (membership fees, fee for services, product sales, assets and investment dividends). In order to diversify or create new income streams, organisations are investing in hard assets such as sports equipment, transport, and facilities infrastructure, as ways to self-finance operations. In addition, some organisations are starting social enterprises, a diverse class of social purpose businesses or market oriented income-generating entities. They can be either for-profit or not-for-profit means of generating new sources of untied/unrestricted monies to supplement charitable donations. Income generating strategies can also open up new categories of funding from social investors and programme related investments from grant making foundations. The EMpower handbook and NESsT publication, “Get Ready, Get Set, starting down the road to self-financing” are two resources that can help an organisation to think through and prepare for the new challenges, unique risks and demands of starting and running a business. It is critical to ensure a social enterprise will enhance the core mission and spirit of the organisation, while guarding its reputation and values.