Building Resilient and Inclusive Livelihoods

Creating sustainable improvements in urban and rural living standards in the developing world.

Our guiding principles address issues, which condemn millions to poverty

  • Extreme poverty cannot be tackled without a mix of political, social and economic activities.
  • There is a widening inequality gap between rich and poor.
  • The wrong aid, such as food dumping, can increase poverty.
  • Corruption prevents aid reaching the poorest.
  • Climate change is a real threat to the livelihoods of poor rural communities in arid, temperate and tropical environments.
  • Poverty is not confined to poorer countries.

Our Approach

Our enviable achievements in the design and delivery of large-scale livelihoods programmes throughout Asia, Europe, and Sub-Saharan Africa, are built on multi-disciplinary approaches and expertise.

Resilient livelihoods require the sustained capability to deal with continuous stresses or increasing pressures, such as those caused by resource degradation or climate change. They also require similar capability to respond to intense and sudden shocks, such as those generated by natural disasters or displacements of large numbers of people.

For livelihood opportunities to be inclusive, they must exist for all sectors of society including people with disabilities, women and girls, youth, such that they do no harm and leave no one behind. Gender mainstreaming forms a consistent feature of our approach.

We achieve results in collaborative partnerships with a range of providers including consultancies, international and national Non-Governmental Organizations, universities and think tanks. Our ability to forge strong relationships with clients and stakeholders allows us to build trust, avoid conflicts of interest, foster the support of those not directly involved in the decision making process and ease the way for successful implementation. Evidence of client satisfaction is given in testimonials, excellent annual reviews and a high proportion of repeat business. Our clients trust us to deliver, and the success of our major projects often provides the impetus for the crowding in of other funders.

However rigorous and sophisticated our analysis, we never lose sight of the fact that our work is about eradicating poverty and increasing the wellbeing of the world’s poor.

BUILDING RESILIENCE THROUGH POVERTY REDUCTION

We have a highly skilled team focused on developing effective poverty reduction programmes. Because poor households are diverse in their characteristics and their needs, our work must address many areas of expertise: from food security and social protection to income-generating activities and basic skills training; from knowledge sharing to access to financial and basic services. We are at the forefront of the successful application of methodologies including productive asset transfer which result in sustainable graduation from extreme poverty. Our capabilities include:

  • Developing livelihoods strategies and programmes.
  • Management of major international programmes funded by major donors.
  • Poverty and vulnerability analysis.
  • Community development.
  • Market based approaches.

BUILDING RESILIENCE THROUGH SOCIAL PROTECTION

We promote social protection and inclusion interventions to reduce the gap between rich and poor, and to achieve long-term, sustainable changes in the livelihoods and the wellbeing of poor groups. Social protection, sustainable livelihoods and food security are interlinked. By tackling them in a holistic way, we can develop coherent packages of interventions that enable individuals, households and communities to better manage risks, vulnerability to crises, and chronic poverty. Our capabilities include:

  • Cash and asset transfer programme design and management.
  • Social protection policy promotion and advocacy.
  • Establishment of pension, cash-for-work and unemployment schemes.

BUILDING RESILIENCE THROUGH AGRICULTURE GROWTH & FOOD SECURITY

Our agriculture growth and food security services draw on decades of experience in delivering effective long-term development solutions whether the economy is agriculture-based, transforming or urbanized. We address the inequalities worsened by food dumping through our work on trade agreements and private sector development. In the agriculture sector we have an exemplary track record in agri-business development, farm and non-farm diversification, and agriculture policy & planning. We also provide value chain analysis to underpin crop selection and agro-processing opportunities, and access to finance and business support services. Our capabilities include:

  • Agricultural growth sector strategies and agricultural policy advice.
  • Advisory services for smallholder farming and livestock production.
  • Facilitation of access to agricultural inputs and market linkages.
  • Smallholder business development and value chain development.
  • Food security assessments and policy advice.

BUILDING RESILIENCE TO CLIMATE CHANGE THROUGH ADAPTATION AND MITIGATION

Throughout our work we address climate change by improving climate resilience among vulnerable groups and by strengthening sustainable natural resource management. Increasingly we promote private sector innovation to meet the challenges of low carbon growth, and support governments in developing targeted policy to address the causes and effects of climate change. Creating solutions to climate challenges in our projects has led to economic development, job creation and industrial competitiveness. Our capabilities include:

  • Promoting the use of seeds, crops and techniques protecting agricultural production against the effects of climate change.
  • Governmental and Civil Society Organization capacity enhancement for coping with climate change.
  • Raising awareness of climate change adaptation and mitigation.
  • Cross-cutting links between vulnerability analysis, livelihoods and diversification of income sources, food security, education, Civil Society Organizations and rural finance.
  • Supporting emerging clean and climate-friendly agribusiness.

Some significant achievements

  • The Chars Livelihoods Project in Bangladesh was an award winning project regularly cited by UK and Bangladeshi government ministers and parliamentarians which lifted 1.5 million people out of extreme poverty and increased incomes by over 350%.
  • The first phase of the Social Assistance Grants for Empowerment programme of the Expanding Social Protection project in Uganda reached some 110,000 beneficiaries in 15 districts, improving the livelihoods of elderly and vulnerable citizens.
  • The Social Protection and Sustainable Livelihoods project in Laos has supported 1,200 poor and vulnerable families through a combination of short-term social transfers, productive assets and coaching to strengthen economic security and resilience.
  • The Ethiopian Climate Innovation Centre supported 20 sustainable climate technology ventures in its first year, and was expected to support over two hundred in the following ten years, facilitating the development of 12,000 direct and indirect jobs.