Sample proposal on women's microenterprise development


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Sample proposal on women's microenterprise development

  1. 1. "We are grateful to Near East for sharing their proposals with us." PALESTINIAN WOMEN’S MICROENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT Proposal OVERVIEW Across the West Bank, recent <Organization Name> (ORG) projects have resulted directly in the creation of hundred of jobs and significant increases in income for women. These successes have given many women their first job and the unprecedented ability to add to and often be the only source of family income. Despite this progress, there is tremendous unrealized opportunity to create additional opportunities for sustainable economic and entrepreneurship for women in the West Bank. ORG’s experience has underscored significant capacity and motivation among Palestinian to break the cycle of poverty and build a better life through microenterprise development. Our goal is to help Palestinian women in the northern West Bank achieve financial independence and security by helping them build skills and resources to start microenterprises. ORG respectfully seeks funding from the <Foundation Name>to provide training for over 200 women entrepreneurs, help establish 100 new businesses, and create 300 new jobs for women. THE CHALLENGES Palestinians in the West Bank face significant economic challenges—mobility, access to capital, and access to markets and technical information. Israeli security measures, particularly the separation barrier, have put unprecedented burdens on Palestinians, 46 percent of whom are unemployed. For Palestinian women, the challenges are even greater. Historically excluded from economic opportunity, they struggle to maintain a household and have few opportunities to develop job skills. Less than 10 percent of women work outside of the home, and even when drawn into the labor market to support families and fill labor gaps, they are often the first to lose their jobs in times of economic difficulty. More and more Palestinian women are working without pay. One-third of Palestinian women work as unpaid laborers. THE OPPORTUNITY Since 2005, ORG has helped Palestinian women increase their income through training in job skills, business management, and income diversification. During this time, ORG has developed a proven model for creating permanent jobs and income—based on business management training, small grants, and microfinance. Through its West Bank School Feeding Program (2006-2010), ORG worked with 24 women’s associations across the West Bank to provide daily nutritionally fortified snacks for more than 50,000 schoolchildren in nearly 200 schools. ORG trained and mentored members of these associations to become both businesswomen and effective partners for children’s nutrition, creating jobs for 2,000 women in the process.
  2. 2. During this process, ORG established very close relationships with women and women’s associations across the northern West Bank. When major funding ended, we used modest resources to continue training women in organizational management, business management, and income diversification. The women were able to put their new knowledge and skills to work immediately to create dozens of jobs through independent small business – bakeries, school canteens, greenhouses, fitness centers, and soap manufacturing (See Annex 5). WHY NOW? Timely action is important for two reasons. First, with the peace talks at an impasse, it is a critical time to help Palestinians find ways to survive. Our local partners want to move beyond the political impasse. ORG is ready to work with them at this juncture to build lasting solutions to poverty and hunger by securing financial freedom for Palestinians. Second, the women ORG has trained have reached a point where independence is within reach; yet they need additional coaching to become self-sustaining. Their success can serve as an example to other women. Soon they will be able to mentor others through business associations and independent businesses. ORG has been able to provide follow-up support to 10 of its 24 partner women’s associations. Our current objective is to consolidate the gains achieved with the initial 10 associations, to expand business development activities to the remaining 14 associations, and to recruit additional association partners. We will begin in activities in four clusters of communities in the northern West Bank – <community>, <community>, <community>, and <community>– where ORG has established relationships and gradually expand to neighboring areas. Key to the success of this program is developing ongoing peer mentorship to launch a new generation of women entrepreneurs. PROJECT GOAL: ORG aims to provide microenterprise development training and support systems to help members of women’s associations in the northern West Bank create micro Through enterprise development and micro financing that will create jobs and generate incomes, ORG aims to reach out to new and existing women’s associations.ORG will build upon the successes of the pilot group of 10 associations and reach out to the 14 remaining women associations, and reach out to other associations in the region. Balata Women’s Association The women’s association of <community> started working with ORG in 2004, one of 24 women’s associations in the West Bank that ORG supported to prepare and distribute nutritionally fortified snacks through the World Food Programme’s school feeding program. When funding ended in 2010, Balata women used their experience to establish concessions in primary schools, providing nutritious snacks to children as a private business. With training from ORG, they have created jobs for 26 women and a revenue stream to invest in social development activities that benefit all of
  3. 3. PROJECT OBJECTIVES AND ACTIVITIES Our proven strategy has four objectives: conducting a regional economic assessment to identify opportunities for microenterprises, building skills in business development, increasing access to micro-credit for microenterprise start-up, and introducing micro franchises. OBJECTIVE 1. CONDUCT REGIONAL ECONOMIC ASSESSMENT To initiate the project, the ORG team will lead members of each target community – particularly members of community women’s associations – in an assessment to identify high-potential economic opportunities that harness a community’s competitive advantage, catalyze broad-based economic growth and create jobs. The process will beorganizedas a self- assessment to guide aspiring entrepreneurs in identifying areas of opportunity and constraint. The assessment will help community members evaluate strategic business niches, with a specific focus on opportunities for women. Activity 1.1. Cluster workshops.ORG will organize 4 1-day workshops (1 per cluster) to assess economic constraints opportunities in target clusters. Activity 1.2. Microenterprise identification. On the basis of the assessment, community members will identify promising areas for microenterprise development by women – either businesses that fill gaps in communities (e.g., internet centers) or activities that leverage competitive advantages of the communities (e.g., agricultural specialties). OBJECTIVE 2: BUILD WOMEN’S SKILLS IN MICRO ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT Based on the economic assessment outcomes, ORG will invite applications individuals and small groups from women’s associations (not limited to current partners) to participate in trainings in microenterprise development and business management. The aim of this training is to build skills among rural Palestinian women to start and management microenterprises in their communities. We will work with community and association leaders to select at least 200 participants, based on the feasibility of their business ideas and their capacity to implement them. In addition, participants from the initial pilot project will be trained as mentors, so that they can provide support to newly trained entrepreneurs. Activity 2.1.Training workshops in microenterprise development. We will work with and through ORG’s partner women’s associations to organize quarterly training workshops for aspiring women entrepreneurs in each of the four clusters of villages (<community>, <community>, <community>, <community>).During five days of training, participants learn about entrepreneurship, business finance, management skills, and microfinance. Activity 2.2.Develop business plans. Microenterprise development training is structured around the development of a business plan. In each module, participants develop sections of their business plan. The business plan follows a simplified, standardized template including: (1) description of the business; (2) description of the product or service; (3) a market study and feasibility analysis; (4) an implementation strategy (e.g., marketing strategy, budget figures, and dates); and (5) a financial plan, including profit and loss, balance sheet, analysis
  4. 4. of business ratios, and cash flow forecasts. Based on prior experience, we anticipate that 75 percent of trainees (150 individuals) will produce a sound, “bankable” business plan. Activity 2.3. Support microenterprise start-up. The primary vehicle for promoting new business start-up will be through existing microcredit facilities, which are numerous in the West Bank though largely unknown to rural women (see Objective 3). Following the initial training, ORG staff will provide individualized continued business coaching to help put business plans into action. ORG’s experienced business development specialists will monitor, coach and advise the women entrepreneurs in the management of their business by providing technical and business management support. Activity 2.4. Establish women’s business support network. While we help trainees grow their businesses by introducing sound business practices, we will also seek additional participants, engaging current partners and participants to guide new ones through peer training. OBJECTIVE 3. INCREASE ACCESS TO MICROCREDIT FOR MICROENTERPRISE START-UP ORG will facilitate relationships between women entrepreneurs and existing micro-credit lenders and will help aspiring women entrepreneurs develop “bankable” business plans to help them secure funding. There are many micro-loan programs in the West Bank – several of them supported by ORG in the past – but most women are unaware or lack the business knowledge to obtain loans. Our aim is to facilitate relationships between aspiring women entrepreneurs with existing sources of loan capital. Activity 3.1. Mobilize review committee of civic and business leaders. We will mobilize a committee of local banking, business, and civic leaders to review business plans and recommend them for funding, in coordination with microcredit institutions. Activity 3.2. Facilitate microenterprise start-up financing. Based on reviews from the committee, ORG will work with women entrepreneurs to complete loan applications. Where necessary, we will provide small loan guarantees to microfinance institutions to enable them to invest specifically in women’s entrepreneurship. OBJECTIVE 4. INTRODUCE MICRO FRANCHISES FOR WOMEN’S BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Based on opportunities identified through the regional economic assessment, ORG will also develop a pilot micro franchise – or network of small businesses (see box). Micro franchises offer aspiring entrepreneurs—people who have limited or no business experience—a way to start a new business with relatively low risk. They increase the likelihood of success by creating support structure – ranging from formal helpdesks to support networks – for business coaching, facilitating economies of scale (procurement, training), and building linkages among entrepreneurs and communities. The Micro franchise Model The micro franchise model involves developing a network of small businesses and linking them together through a shared business plan that includes comprehensive guidelines for:  Technology selection  Business management  Staffing and customer service  Quality control  Branding and marketing  Reporting and accounting systems
  5. 5. ORG’s has successfully used this micro franchise model in Armenia for rural computer centers and for dried fruit. The initial assessment of our target area in the West Bank identified rural Internet centers and dried herbs as high potential activities. We aim to identify and introduce at least one pilot micro franchise under the women’s microenterprise development project, combining microcredit with small grants to further reduce risk to potential women entrepreneurs. Activity 4.1. Develop at least micro franchise model. Based on the regional economic assessment and preferences identified during initial outreach to women’s associations, ORG will identify a pilot micro franchise. Activity 4.2. Recruit and train micro franchise owners and employees. In targeted communities, ORG will recruit aspiring entrepreneurs who have an interest in opening and managing a business and can finance a minimum of 50 percent of the start-up costs (including land, building space, or equipment, as well as cash). The selected entrepreneurs will complete business trainings, with specific focus on the operation of the micro franchise. Activity 4.3. Provide micro franchises with financing and launch support. Using the same approach as individual microenterprise development, ORG will facilitate relationships with existing microcredit institutions. We will also provide modest start-up grants to complement microcredit and further reduce risk. Businesses will complete a one-month probationary period or “soft launch,” during which they are provided with extra support in resolving issues. After successfully completing this phase, businesses will be integrated into the brand network, allowing collaboration between franchise owners. Activity 4.4.Provide monitoring and ongoing support. Project beneficiaries, business mentors, and project staff will meet regularly on an ongoing basis and conduct periodic training for franchisees and their administrators and other employees. EXPECTED OUTCOMES ORG will build on its work with women’s associations in the West Bank to expand and support entrepreneurship and enterprise development for support for 200 women. We will incorporate additional communities, provide business coaching, and support new businesses through community-based credit. We will help women prepare business plans, get access to credit (micro-loans), and mentor them in establishing their businesses. Both cooperative and individual businesses will be helped through this project. We will continue to work with the 10 current women’s associations and expand to over 14 new associations. By expanding our training in business management, marketing, and product diversification, we hope to establish at least 150 new, sustainable businesses and 300 new jobs for women. SUSTAINABILITY (WHAT HAPPENS AFTER 4 YEARS?) It is envisioned that, after 4 years, the activities launched through the project will continue to operate and expand independent of any ORG involvement. There are 3 aspects to the projects sustainability:
  6. 6. (1) Robust businesses are inherently sustain-able. The individual microenterprises established through the project will continue to function, to generate income, and to create jobs after the end of the project. (2) By working with and through community-based women’s associations that are accustomed to operating businesses, ORG will strengthen their capacity to provide ongoing support to their members who have started their own businesses. (3) The women’s business council is intended to provide a forum for women entrepreneurs to continue to share their experience and to provide peer-to-peer business mentoring without the involvement of an outside organization. The council will be made up of both experienced and new entrepreneurs. New entrepreneurs will be able to seek guidance from more experienced entrepreneurs. The activities of the council – workshops, peer training, and exchanges – will encourage the expansion of business opportunities for women after the end of the project. (4) The micro-franchise concept is designed to establish a network of businesses, with the aim of (a) simplifying the launch and operation of a business for individuals who have limited business management experience and (b) facilitate peer-to-peer support in technical and managerial aspects of microenterprises. The project is planned for 4 years in order to provide adequate time to mentor new business owners and to establish support structures (council, council chapters, and micro-franchises) so that they are able function independently. The project itself will not establish new businesses in the fourth year, but it is anticipated that the number will increase independently, even in the fourth year, due to support from the women’s business council, facilitated access to micro-credit for new business start-up, and the micro franchise business model.
  7. 7. ATTACHMENT 1: ORGANIZATIONAL BACKGROUND For over 95 years, the <Organization Name> has helped build more sustainable, prosperous, and inclusive communities in the Middle East and Africa through education, governance, and economic development initiatives. ORG is an operational NGO with projects in seven countries – Armenia, Egypt, Jordan, Mali, Morocco, Palestine, and Sudan. Working with local partners, our programs directly improve the lives of tens of thousands of vulnerable people across the region in the face of chronic poverty, conflict, and climate change. ORG programs focus on four areas – Peace building, Civic Engagement and Education, Sustainable Agriculture, and Microenterprise Development. In 2010, ORG entered into a strategic affiliation with < Name> in order to bring the talent and creative energy of the to bear on the problems of the Middle East and Africa. ORG’s headquarters is located on the campus of < Name>, where students and faculty participate actively in project management, communications, and assessment. ORG Experience in Palestine For more than 80 years, the <Organization Name> (ORG) has worked to improve the lives of individuals and families in the Palestinian Territories through initiatives that increase agricultural productivity, improve early childhood education and nutrition, establish environmental management systems, support the disabled, and help the disadvantaged – including women – create businesses. Over time, ORG has gained an unparalleled depth of knowledge about local communities and institutions and the unique development challenges facing the conflict-affected Palestinian Territories. Based in Nablus, ORG-Palestine’s program staff—all of whom are from the West Bank— have cultivated strong relationships with community organizations and government officials in villages across the West Bank. These enduring partnerships provide ORG with a foundation of trust for mobilizing community action.ORG has cultivated long-term relationships with community organizations and government officials in dozens of villages across the northern West Bank. These enduring partnerships provide ORG with intimate knowledge of vulnerable Palestinian communities and a foundation of trust for mobilizing community action. ORG maintained programs in vocational training and enterprise development across the West Bank from the early 1930s until 1967.In 1948, the International Red Cross recognized ORG for its humanitarian service to Palestinian refugees. When ORG establish edits current office in the Palestinian Territories in 1994, it launched innovative programs utilizing its development staff from neighboring countries. One example was the successful introduction of fish farming, based on ORG experience in Jordan. In 1996, ORG began working with commercial banks to support the creation of small and medium scale businesses in industries ranging from housing and agriculture to exports through micro credit and small grants. From 2004-2010, ORG implemented an Early Childhood Education and School Nutrition program. With support from the World Food Program, ORG worked through community-based women’s associations to provide supplemental nutrition to approximately54,000 Palestinian children.
  8. 8. Working with <Local University>, ORG provided training in early childhood education and teaching methods for over 100teachers and 40 school principals as part of a comprehensive effort to improve the quality of education in kindergartens. Local Partners Collaboration is a fundamental principle that guides ORG’s work. Our primary partners in this project are women’s business associations, which are common throughout urban and rural West Bank. The associations are essential resources for women: they play a dual role of creating jobs and income for their members (many pay yearly dividends) while providing social services such as revolving savings and credit.
  9. 9. ATTACHMENT 2: FOUR-YEAR WORK PLAN Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Activity Outputs Outcomes 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 Objective 1. Conduct Regional Economic Assessment Cluster workshops 4 1-day workshops [1 per cluster]  Community members, particularly women, have improved understanding of economic opportunities and constraintsMicroenterprise identification List and analysis of high-potential micro-enterprises Objective 2: Build women’s skills in microenterprise development Training workshops in microenterprise development 24 5-day workshops  2 workshops / cluster / year during first 3 years (8 workshops / year)  40 training days per year  8 women / workshop [64 / year]  Women develop business planning and management skills  New women-owned businesses are created  Support network provides women entrepreneurs access to peer mentorship Develop business plans 200 business plans Support microenterprise start-up At least 150 new businesses [50 per year over 3 years] are launched, creating at least 300 jobs Establish women’s business support network Creation of 1 women’s business support network with 4 chapters Objective 3. Increase access to microcredit for microenterprise start-up Mobilize review committee of civic and business leaders Community leaders participate in review of business plans  Women are able to access existing micro-credit resources to start up and operate microenterprisesFacilitate microenterprise start-up financing Micro-credit loans secured for 150 women-led businesses Objective 4. Introduce microfranchises for women’s business development Develop at least one micro franchise model Micro-franchise business plan  Easily replicable business model is established to accelerate the creation of women-led microenterprises Recruit and train micro franchise owners and employees 20 micro franchise owners trained [10 / year in Years 2 and 3] Provide micro franchises with financing and launch support 20 start-up grants awarded Provide monitoring and ongoing support Regular follow-up visits with micro franchise owners
  10. 10. ATTACHMENT 3: BUDGET SUMMARY Amount (US Dollars) Budget Line Item Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Total Personnel/Trainers 25,100 25,100 25,100 17,900 93,200 Transportation 3,000 3,000 3,000 3,000 12,000 Operating Costs 3,600 3,600 3,600 - 10,800 Program Activities 4,000 17,400 17,400 2,400 41,200 Total 35,700 49,100 49,100 23,300 157,200
  11. 11. ATTACHMENT 4: DETAILED BUDGET Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 TOTAL Unit Cost Unit Units Unit Cost Total Units Unit Cost Total Units Unit Cost Total Units Unit Cost Total Units Unit Cost Total PERSONNEL Project Director/Business Trainer 4,500 /month 2 4,500 9,000 2 4,500 9,000 2 4,500 9,000 2 4,500 9,000 8 4,500 36,000 Field Coordinator/Trainer 1,200 /month 12 1,200 14,400 12 1,200 14,400 12 1,200 14,400 6 1,200 7,200 42 1,200 50,400 Finance & Admin 850 /month 2 850 1,700 2 850 1,700 2 850 1,700 2 850 1,700 8 850 6,800 Subtotal Personnel 25,100 25,100 25,100 17,900 93,200 TRAVEL & TRANSPORTATION Ground Transportation 250 /month 12 250 3,000 12 250 3,000 12 250 3,000 12 250 3,000 48 250 12,000 Subtotal Travel 3,000 3,000 3,000 3,000 12,000 OPERATING COSTS Communications 150 /month 12 150 1,800 12 150 1,800 12 150 1,800 0 150 - 36 150 5,400 Office rent 100 /month 12 100 1,200 12 100 1,200 12 100 1,200 0 100 - 36 100 3,600 Supplies 50 /month 12 50 600 12 50 600 12 50 600 0 50 - 36 50 1,800 Subtotal Operating Costs 3,600 3,600 3,600 - 10,800 PROGRAM ACTIVITIES Training and Capacity Building Regional Economic Assessment 1,200 study 1 1,200 1,200 1,200 Cluster workshops 100 /workshop 4 100 400 400 Training Supplies 200 /session 12 200 2,400 12 200 2,400 12 200 2,400 12 200 2,400 9,600 Micro franchise Start-up Grants 1,500 /grant 10 1,500 15,000 10 1,500 15,000 0 - - 30,000 Subtotal Program Activity 4,000 17,400 17,400 2,400 41,200 Total Project Cost 35,700 - - 49,100 - - 49,100 - - 23,300 - - 157,200
  12. 12. ANNEX 5: RAPID ASSESSMENT OF ORG-SUPPORTED WOMEN’S ASSOCIATIONS SINCE 2009 The following are the business records for 11 women associations ORG worked with since 2009. The total number of members in the 11 societies is 1100 women. The number of businesses (group microenterprises) and income generating activities (individual activities) is reflected in the table below. They include both business supported by ORG and those created independently by the associations based on ORG training. The figures are based on interviews with leaders of each association, conducted in July 2012. # Women Association Location Businesses and income generating activities created Type of Businesses Jobs Created Estimated Annual Profit (US$) 1 <CBO> <community > 18 embroidery and sewing, food production 18 Seasonal 9,000 2 <CBO> <community > 38 school canteens, home gardens, food production 28 Seasonal 10 Permanent 19,000 3 <CBO> <community > 22 food production, livestock breeding 20 Seasonal 2 Permanent 12,000 4 <CBO> <community > 45 school canteen, livestock , food production 37 Seasonal 8 Permanent 24,000 5 <CBO> <community > 5 beekeeping and livestock breeding 5 Seasonal 6,000 6 <CBO> <community > 9 food production, schools canteen and home gardens 9 Seasonal 13,000 7 <CBO> <community > 33 school canteens, food production 33 Seasonal 21,000 8 <CBO> <community > 24 embroidery and sewing 21 Seasonal 3 Permanent 18,000 9 <CBO> <community > 16 herbs and food production 16 Seasonal 4,800 10 <CBO> <community > 11 livestock, home gardens, 6 Seasonal 5 Permanent 7,200 11 <CBO> <community > 30 livestock breeding, home gardens, schools canteens 19 Seasonal 11 Permanent 22,000 TOTAL 251 212 Seasonal 39 Permanent 156,000