At MEDA, we believe that when we take a shared risk with the poor we will see cascading returns of many kinds. Our commitment to creating business solutions to poverty for the poorest of the economically active most often results in immediate and dramatic impact for those families and their communities. While the poor are not immune to global economic pressures, unleashing their own entrepreneurship and skills is the best way to create sustainable livelihoods, which in turn gives families the vision and options to make a better life for themselves, fosters more stable communities, and engenders a new hope that is spiritual in essence.
In Afghanistan, one of our clients is a woman named Shareefa who received a $125 loan from our local partner there. She was able to invest this in her kitchen garden where she applied improved production methods, which she learned from another MEDA project, to increase her yields. "With the help of this loan," she says, "I became a good leader and gained respect from the villagers – both men and women." Creating a leader for $125, funds that will be used over and over again in the program, is a risk with truly cascading returns!
Reflecting our faith values, our work with Shareefa and millions of other families around the world not only demonstrates practical and creative business solutions but also builds long‑term relationships that promote trust and peace and opens doors for God to create hope.
This year we were able to help more than 18 million families realize healthier, more economically sustainable lives. Working through 227 partners in 56 countries we reached over 14 million clients served by microfinance institutions and small and medium enterprises where MEDA has an investment through one of the Sarona funds; 1.1 million families who received mosquito nets in Tanzania; and 2.9 million farmers and entrepreneurs who received training, financial services and/or access to markets provided by MEDA and our partners. These numbers do not count clients of organizations we worked with in the past who continue to serve thousands of entrepreneurs long after MEDA is no longer directly involved.
Your contributions made this possible! We multiplied your $5 million in private contributions – up 65% from last year – with government and foundation funding to achieve a total budget of nearly $33 million.
Assets in the Sarona Risk Capital Fund increased 16% to $20 million. While total assets under management increased slightly to $180 million, several new investment opportunities point toward considerable growth in the future.
We were grateful to see a net surplus of $2.0 million, resulting from an operating surplus of $530,000 and a $1.5 million increase in the equity of our Sarona Risk Capital Fund. Most of these funds will be reinvested again and again in businesses that serve the poor.
We are immensely grateful to our supporters, our board, and our wonderful staff who generously share their time, skills and resources, and take risks that create cascading returns. We invite you to join in this work.
Allan Sauder, President
Debbie Sauder David, Chair