According to FAO of the United Nations, we are at the beginning of a
food crisis similar to the year 2008. GVF which collaborates with local
communities to determine what those communities need the most proposed a
solution plan of the crisis. The population, particularly women, is in dire
need of assistance. They need loans with very little interest if not zero
interest rate to start their businesses.
GVF raised some funds in order to make the loans accessible to many
persons with specific needs, with zero interest rate. Knowing the bulk of the
population in the rural regions has expressed their lack of skills in various
trades and lack of information regarding their sector activities. GVF trained
the population in agriculture, animal husbandry, fishing and microfinance
GVF has recently initiated a micro loan methodology which yielded
fantastic results. The method permits the beneficiaries to establish their own
business and become self sustained within six months. This is how it works:
Green Village Foundation invests $2000 in 20 groups of 5 women. The 5 women
received $100 for 1 month for a profit of $10 ($5 is kept by the group and $5
kept by GVF. In three months time, GVF uses the generated benefits to increase
the number of beneficiaries, and so on. This method guaranties the sustainably
of the business and as time goes on as women are assisted.
Many values guide our work within Green Village Foundation. Internally,
accounts are verified by the Executive Board and the General Assembly. Green
Village Foundation manages the funds of donors in a fair and transparent
manner. An independent auditor renowned nationally and internationally audited
annually our accounts. All GVF activities were closely monitored using both performance
and impact indicator systems.
Donations are transparently delivered to the target beneficiaries. We do
this often in the presence of the media, the local government authorities and a
representative of the donor. For the example a French organization offered
through Green Village Foundation some used clothes to poorest in one village
and another organization gave Green Village Foundation some essential drugs. We
carried the drugs to one village clinic to deliver all quantity given to us to
the clinic in the presence of authorities, the hospital staff and some
In GVF transparency and accountability has become a \ »mot
d\’ordre\ » and a \ »raison d\’être\ » GVF has the responsibility to
ensure that every cent donated goes to the targeted beneficiaries and has
visible impact on their lives. Account books were frequently controlled to
avoid misused of donor funds. Both financial and narrative reports on
activities were required on monthly basis and internal control systems to
discipline all staff working with GVF. A printed code of conduct document is
being handed to every staff and be part of his/her work contract.
The implementation and the management of every project
will be run in such a way that its sustainability will be guaranteed after the
two-year term. The beneficiaries will be provided with adequate capacity for
them to take charge of project which from the very beginning, had be programmed
to be their own.
Following the GVF visit to the rural populations of Kpinnou, the members
of GVF, and the local authorities of this village observed that the populations
lives in the unhealthiest environment: absence of public toilets, non-existence
of management system of household waste, stain of water sources. GVF was
contacted by Kpinnou\’s civil society organization. We planned together and
designed a working plan with a project proposal submitted to the American
Embassy for funding. The dossier is promising.
Within the framework of the world day of the environment, The Ministry
of the Environment of Benin Republic and Nature conservation donated to GVF,
cleaning materials consisted of: 20 gloves, 20 rakes with sleeve handle, 10
shovels with sleeve handle, and 10 brooms roadmen with sleeve handle, 10
cutting, 20 masks nose, 10 iron hoes, and 10 pairs of boot to initiate a
cleaning campaign in a village called Guiadio.
In a collaboration of the Ministry of Work within the Government of the
Republic of Benin, GVF trained secretaries and receptionists on how to receive
visitors in a professional, respectful and cheerful manner. This workshop was
appreciated by many other line ministries.
GVF has assigned itself the task of looking for resources to implement
the first Millennium Development Objectives (MDO) which is to reduce poverty
starting from the rural areas. The goal is therefore to put mechanisms in place
in order to implement appropriate projects in the area of socio-cultural
economy in the targeted Provinces. Many Government Agencies and most United
Nations Agencies think funding can just be provided to the Central Government
in other to implement the objectives of the Millennium Goals.
Well Green Village Foundation thinks the opposite. GVF thinks if the
first objective \ »Eradicate extreme poverty by 2015\ » is not been
tackled from the grassroots which is from the villages, this goal will not be
achieved. GVF, who has observed that 70 to 80% of the countries\’ poor
population lives in the rural, suggested that the poverty alleviation fight
should start from the villages. That is why GVF believes in Sustainable
Community Development Strategies.
Participative brain storming sessions were held with the concerned
population. From these meetings, it was observed that the persons concerned
with poverty could easily come out of their state of life if development
capacities were provided to them. Few actions to take urgently are in the areas
of microfinance, new farming techniques, animal husbandry and fishing.
The phase one of this integrated rural development project has duration
of two (2) years and was implemented in the District of Houeyogbe in the Mono
Province, the south-west part of the Republic of Benin, in West Africa. It has
been observed that the population in this part of the country is hard-working,
determined to get out of poverty. Situational analyses from GVF team showed
that the techniques can improve the farming and fishing methods, and are ready
to sensitize population on the improvement of the prevailing situation.
The funding will help re-organize the agricultural and
the microfinance sectors. The health and education sector activities will be
implemented by GVF and its partners that are already working in the region for
a collaborative effort to succeed in a sustainable community development.
In addition to actual education, the training and
resources provide by Green Village Foundation frees time from water collection,
farming and other necessities so that more children, especially girls, can
remain in school. In addition to tailoring, weaving and handicraft businesses,
we have built a small soap-making factory which uses palm oil from the native
palm plants for the base material in our soap.
Providing access to capital and its compounding effects
on the borrower’s family and through repeated loan and re-investment cycles is
one of our core programs, and we believe the key to creating economic
self-reliance. Organising village women to form themselves in corporative to
undertak agricultural, small trade activities.
Several villages have contacted GVF for assistance. GVF
called on overseas donors to rather work with the NGO\’s than the countries
government in the execution of the Millennium Development Objectives. The only
water point constructed by GVF in the village of Guiadio initially constructed
to serve a small village of 200 people (5 years ago) has become insufficient,
as women from 5 other small villages come to fetch water in Guiadio villages.
The other 5 villages count some 2500 people. If funds are available, GVF will
plan to dig water wells or pump in these other villages.
Another existing project to extend to other villages
are providing classroom desks for children in some primary schools (see some
picture in GVF website). Due to poverty, many young girls and boys stop
schooling. The girls are in majority GVF intends to establish a vocational
Centre which will teach various trades to these school drop ups. The GVF
President has already acquired a piece of land for this project. All that is
needed now is funding the construction of the Centre and some working tools.