MEDA Annual Report

MEDA Annual Report - 2008

MEDA Annual Report - 2008

Executive View

In a topsy‑turvy world of investments gone bad, disappointing returns, missed quarterly projections, and assets not worth the paper they are written on, how can we speak of Dividends of Hope? It is easy to become frustrated when hard work and careful saving does not yield the kind of future we envisioned. But most of us remain confident that in the long run those investments will recover.

For millions of poor families around the world, however, there are no retirement funds, stock portfolios, or even bank accounts. There is only the daily grind of finding enough food, water and fuel to provide the basics. Earnings from small businesses and farms are often inadequate to afford education for their children, decent housing to protect from the elements, or health care for the sick and elderly. Where then is their hope?

At MEDA we believe that investing in the poor is our God‑given mandate and a proven strategy for creating sustainable livelihoods. "God puts poor people on their feet again; he rekindles burned‑out lives with fresh hope, restoring dignity and respect to their lives – a place in the sun!" (1 Samuel 2: 8 MSG). We believe people in business are called to serve God with their unique gifts. When we take a risk with the poor and apply business principles to create sustainable livelihoods, hope is clearly the dividend – hope for economic security, hope for a better future, hope for peace and prosperity.

This year MEDA's work extended dividends of hope to more than 2.6 million families in 44 countries, in partnership with 139 locally owned and managed organizations. Families from Afghanistan to Zambia benefited from increased incomes, new skills and better health – new hope!

God also calls us to invest in the things that are important. "Be generous: Invest in acts of charity. Charity yields high returns" (Ecclesiastes 11:1 MSG). We were delighted that, despite turbulent markets, 2008 was a year of continued growth for MEDA. Contributions from our 2,900 members and 2,000 supporters reached a new record of $2.9 million, up 12% from last year. We were able to leverage those contributions with government contracts and other funding by a factor of more than five to one, for total revenue of $18.5 million, up 15% from last year.

Equally important, assets in the Sarona Risk Capital Fund increased 34% to $10.7 million, members' direct investment in MEDA programs increased 20% to $15 million, and assets under management increased 36% to $132 million. Our net surplus of $1.8 million, resulting largely from appreciation in the value of our Sarona Risk Capital Fund investments and generous contributions, gives us hope that the poor are indeed investible. Most of these funds will be reinvested again and again in businesses that serve the poor.

This year we also began what we hope will become a more global outreach to supporters, investors and government donors. Titus Horsch was hired as our MEDA representative for Europe, based in Germany and charged with expanding our visibility there and throughout Europe.

We are immensely grateful to our members and our board who generously share their time, skills and resources to help MEDA create Dividends of Hope. We invite you to join in this work.

Allan Sauder, President
Mel Stjernholm, Chair


 

MEDA Annual Report - 2007

MEDA Annual Report - 2007

Executive View

Leaders know all about trust. Handling tough choices in our businesses, communities, churches and development programs demands trust – in the strength of our relationships, in the skills and experience we bring, in our values, and above all, in God’s abiding love and guiding hand.

“Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul” (Psalm 143:8 NIV).

As leaders, we can build Trust in a World of Change. Amid daily chaos, fear and misunderstanding, we are called to help restore right relationships – with God, with neighbors, and with all of creation. At MEDA we believe people in business can serve God with their unique gifts. When we take a risk with the poor and apply business principles to create sustainable livelihoods, hope is clearly the result – hope for economic security, hope for a better future, hope for peace and prosperity.

In business, as in all of life, relationships are the key. Despite flagrant betrayals by some, trust is really at the heart of all business transactions. Relationships depend on trust, so to restore relationships we need to build trust. And that takes time. It comes not so much from what we say but from how we live daily in business, in our professions, in our families. And it begins with hospitality. “Also you shall not oppress a stranger, for you know the heart of a stranger, because you were strangers in the land of Egypt” (Exodus 23:9 NKJV).

This year MEDA’s work extended trust and hospitality to 2.2 million families in 39 countries, in partnership with 127 locally owned and managed organizations. Families in places as remote as Afghanistan and Tajikistan, and as close to home as New Orleans and Appalachia, have all benefited from increased incomes, new skills and better health. We have developed friendships and better understanding – relationships based on trust that are surely the building blocks to peace.

We are delighted that 2007 has been a year of continued growth for MEDA, with a positive bottom line. Revenue increased by 17 percent to $16.1 million, while contributions from our 2,500 members and 1,600 donors grew 46 percent to $2.6 million – providing the valuable matching funds that help us leverage contracts from governments and large donors. Our net surplus of $1 million, resulting primarily from generous contributions to our Sarona Risk Capital Fund and some appreciation in the value of our investments, will be reinvested in businesses that serve the poor.

We are immensely grateful to our members and our board who generously share their time, skills and resources to help MEDA build Trust in a World of Change. We invite you to join in this work.

Allan Sauder, President
Mel Stjernholm, Chair


 

MEDA Annual Report - 2006

MEDA Annual Report - 2006

Executive View

MEDA is an association of leaders... in our businesses, our communities, our churches, and our development programs around the world. To lead is to influence change. As leaders, we have the opportunity to Set the Pace. MEDA’s members are entrepreneurs who work together to help others reach their God-given potential. Investing in business goes far beyond our own ventures – it stretches to helping women in Pakistan access better markets for their embroidery; farmers in Nicaragua to access the capital they need to grow; young entrepreneurs in North America to develop the skills and confidence to get into business; students in Egypt to work more safely while they help their families afford education; and mothers in Tanzania to buy insecticide-treated bed nets that protect them and their families from malaria.

But to lead is also a responsibility. We are called to lead in ways that our values are inseparable from our work. Our organizations’ credibility depends on our personal integrity in all matters and truly caring for those whom we serve – customers, partners, donors, clients, investors and everyone we encounter in our working life. We are called to lead in ways that honor God, because it is God who is ultimately in charge.

“Our lives get in step with God and all others by letting God set the pace, not by proudly or anxiously trying to run the parade.” (Romans 3:27 The Message)

It is our privilege to bring you this report of MEDA’s activities in fiscal year 2006. We are pleased to report that MEDA continues to be a leader in innovation for the poor – setting the pace for others to follow. Through our programs of economic development we served more than 2.6 million clients this year, in partnership with 173 organizations in 35 countries around the world. And those numbers do not even count the organizations that we worked with in the past who continue to provide thousands of entrepreneurs with financial, marketing and training services long after MEDA is no longer directly involved.

We are also very pleased that 2006 has been a year of continued growth for MEDA, with a positive bottom line. Total revenue increased by 25 percent to $13.7 million, while contributions from our members and donors increased six percent to $1.8 million and provided the valuable matching funds that we need to leverage contracts from governments and other donors. Our net surplus of $696,000 resulted primarily from generous grants and contributions to our Sarona Risk Capital Fund and some appreciation in the value of our investments.

We are immensely grateful to our members and our board who generously share their time, skills and resources to help MEDA set the pace. We invite you to share in this work.

Allan Sauder, President
John Yoder, Chair