How We’re Different
We differentiate ourselves in two key ways:
(1) We develop sustainable solutions to give people a hand up, not a hand out
(2) A keen business approach underlines all our activities, with an emphasis on efficiency, value for money and return on investment
We invest deeply across all necessary sectors to provide sustainable solutions that enable communities to comprehensively overcome systematic problems. For us, the ultimate measure of success is our ability to exit and leave behind an empowered and self-sufficient community that can continue the work we have begun – we aim to do this within a relatively short five – seven year timescale once we have funding in place.
Our approach gets local people on board from the very beginning. We bring together communities and both local and central government, along with other stakeholders, to develop long-term partnerships and action plans.
We employ local staff and train local communities, leaders and civil society to plan their own futures, execute and implement their own strategies, and become accountable to all sectors of their communities. This helps promote a just and fair society for all, and ensures that the local community has the skills and capital to sustain and build on improvements after Foundation Nepal’s exit.
A business approach underpins all our work
Foundation Nepal is different from other charities, because we are managed by successful senior business people on a day-to-day basis and we are also governed by successful senior business people via our Board of Directors. This business-like approach to the charity world permeates all aspects of our work, combining altruism with effectiveness.
The highest standards of quality and professionalism underpin all of our work. We set ourselves clear targets that are tied to financial inputs, and we provide transparent and timely financial information. This allows our donors to measure the return on investment of our programmes, and ultimately our ability to deliver a real solution to extreme poverty, in a cost-effective way. We aim to be the Ryanair of the charity world, getting as much as possible out of every euro of funding.
In Nepal, our programmes must provide a long-term return on investment, giving people a hand up, not just a temporary hand out. We employ and upskill local people from the community, which makes initiatives more sustainable and keeps salary costs at a much lower level than using ‘experts’ and Westerners, who expect Western pay rates. For example, our health workers are paid an average of EUR 70 per month, so your money goes a long way. It also means that when we exit, these people with deep roots in their own communities, will stay in place. Often charities employ ‘experts’ and Westerners to get fast results, but when programmes finish, these people move on to new opportunities and the benefits of the programme are decreased.
We also use business to address the problem of hunger and malnutrition. As well as working to improve food production, we also help people to set up micro-businesses and micro-finance, so that they can use their earnings to buy food, and invest in their land productivity.