Bufunfa, bolada, grana, trocado, tutu – these are some of the many slang words, synonyms for ‘money’, found throughout Brazil. The truth is that money is needed for many things in our lives, but specially for delivering dignity: having something to eat on your plate and for the basics of health and sanitation. And that’s where income generation comes into place.
“Employment and Income Generation comprises the creation of new and small production units or the expansion of existing ones. It means encouraging or allowing people to start their own business aimed at the market in a cooperative manner, in association or individually. It also means the generation of economic activity, through small individual business or in association/cooperation,” defines the Minas Gerais Association of Municipalities.
But is it any job?
The answer is “no.” Forced labor, modern slavery, human trafficking and child labor must be eradicated in all its forms.
It’s necessary “to promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all.” Decent Work and Economic Growth are two points present in the Sustainable Development Goals proposed by the United Nations (UN), the eighth one, so that all people can enjoy peace and prosperity.
That being said, what does Raízes do?
We are a social business – we have the objective of solving a social problem, we are financially self-sustainable and we do not distribute dividends. This means that we have a mission, just like a non-profit organization (NGO), but we generate enough revenue to cover our costs, just as a traditional business. Therefore, we are in the so-called 2.5 sector (between the second sector, companies, ant the third sector, NGOs).
We have five main fields of activity, including Entrepreneurship and Income Generation. On this front, we design and implement projects in communities, especially traditional ones. These, according to the government, Traditional Peoples and Communities (TPC), are “culturally differentiated groups that recognize themselves as such, that have their own forms of social organization, that occupy and use territories and natural resources as condition for their cultural, social, religious, ancestral and economic reproduction, using knowledge, innovations and practices created and transmitted by tradition.”
The steps for this process include identifying the characteristics and needs of a territory (a need that is often brought up by those who come to us to develop the project), practicing active listening with the local population and then designing a solution.
We can, for example: identify an existing network of artisans and/or create from scratch an association of local entrepreneurs thinking together the best for the territory. From there, it’s possible to: define an agenda of periodic meetings, create a physical space for the functioning of this organism, carry out a series of training workshops according to the needs of each one or a group of people – there are many possibilities.
Our experience and the lessons we learned have brought us the perception that, despite having point in common, each project is unique. This is due to local characteristics such as culture, identity, climate, historical context, physical structure etc. And we have specialists to handle all stages of the process considering these specificities.
The ultimate goal is to contribute to entrepreneurship and income generation, making these people have decent work, and also generating economic growth for the region. Therefore, in addition to technical training, there is always planning for development of personal and interpersonal skills and governance planning, communication and market access actions.
And from the beginning to the end of a project, many things happen along the way, such as people rediscovering the joy of living, people who overcome depression, who manage to help other family members in need, who come out of a situation of vulnerability, who rediscover their identity as belonging to a group…
We act as doers of actions. A consultancy, in different levels, depending on what it takes to achieve the expected result.
Who can hire us to carry out entrepreneurship and income Generation projects?
A foundation, a corporation, a network, an organization, an association, etc.
For those reasons, Raízes contribute with two* SDG 8 goals
– 8.3 “Promote development-oriented policies that support productive activities, decent job creation, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and encourage the formalization and growth of micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises, including through access to financial services”
– 8.9 “By 2030, devise and implement policies to promote sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products”
(*There is 10 in total).
We hope we were able to explain clearly our performance with entrepreneurship and income generation projects. If this is your need, write to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be happy to help you along the way.