We believe in the power of enterprise to reduce global poverty.
SEEP’s Market Facilitation (MaFI) Working Group and Strengthening the Economic Potential of the Ultra Poor (STEP UP) Initiative hosted a series of webinars on the recently launched “Integrating Very Poor Producers Into Value Chains Field Guide.” The recordings can be found below:
In the year 2000, the United Nations created the Millennium Declaration based on the principles of freedom, equality, solidarity, tolerance, respect for nature, and shared responsibility, with a resolution to “halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of the world’s people whose income is less than one dollar a day and the proportion of people who suffer from hunger.”1 The most recent edition (2007) of the “Millennium Development Goals Report” states that 980 million people are still living on less than US$ 1 per day—down from 1.25 billion in 1990.2 For this goal to be accomplished in the next seven years, by 2015, the number of very poor people needs to further decline by at least 355 million people.
Since its inception, microfinance has aimed to make a significant contribution to poverty eradication, with a vision of achieving both massive scale and deep sustainability. Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus declared that “we can create a poverty-free world if we collectively believe in it.”3 This notion that microfinance and enterprise development are powerful tools for poverty eradication has been embraced by governments, donors, development practitioners, and citizens around the globe with an energy and commitment of resources never before witnessed.