Entrepreneurship and Innovation to End Extreme Poverty

We believe in the power of the entrepreneurial spirit to transform lives. Village Enterprise equips people living in extreme poverty in rural Africa to start sustainable businesses and savings groups. Graduates from our program generate income and savings from their small businesses that improves their standard of living and breaks the cycle of poverty for themselves and their families.

What We Do

Over 1 Million Lives transformed

High cost-effectiveness and comprehensive positive impact.

RCT by Innovations for Poverty Action

Village Enterprise by the Numbers

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People Trained

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Lives Transformed

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Women-Led Businesses

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

-African Proverb

Village Enterprise is a pioneer in the quest to help rural Africans lift themselves from poverty forever. With positive results from an independent randomized control trial and the launch of the first development impact bond in poverty alleviation in Africa, we are now poised to expand our graduation program throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Scaling through partnerships, Village Enterprise has set the audacious goal of lifting 20 million people out of extreme poverty by 2030.

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What Makes Village Enterprise Unique?

Village Enterprise sewing business

Group-Based and Cost-Effective

Village Enterprise launches businesses made up of three entrepreneurs. By doing so, we bring diverse skill sets together, spread risk, build social capital, and produce cost efficiencies.

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Hands holding money

Cash Transfers, Not Loans

A small cash transfer, rather than a loan, gives business owners an immediate kick-start in building a sustainable business and improving their family’s standard of living.

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Child in an empty desert

Remote and Rural

Working in poorer and far more remote villages than are typically served by other NGOs, Village Enterprise is committed to serving communities that have the greatest need.

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Village Enterprise, Winnie

Passionate and Talented African Leadership

Highlighted in the 10th-anniversary issue of The Stanford Social Innovation Review, 95% of Village Enterprise staff are African leaders, innovators, and change makers.

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Hands holding cellphone

Rigorous Monitoring and Evaluation

Our Graduation program was shown to be both cost effective and high impact by an independent, large-scale randomized control trial (RCT) conducted by Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA).

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Village Enterprise women talking

Innovation and Collaboration in Our DNA

A Rockefeller Foundation Next Century Innovator and Drucker Innovation Prize finalist, Village Enterprise launched with partners the 1st Development Impact Bond in poverty alleviation in Africa.

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Village Enterprise entrepreneur, Lucy, with her two children

“I have a happy life and a better lifestyle… and I have hope for the future.” – Lucy

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Margaret’s Story