World Vision Canada’s impact investing arm mobilizes and deploys financial capital in innovative ways to fund market-driven solutions to help end inequality for the world’s most vulnerable children and their communities.
There are three main ways we do this: though an investment product called the Small and Growing Business Bond, through an annual Social Innovation Challenge, and through our Social Venture Fund, which provides venture capital to entrepreneurs working on global challenges.
The SGB Bond is an investment that provides a 3% annual return over a three-year term. It invests in emerging businesses in Mexico, Ghana, Sri Lanka and Myanmar. In addition to providing loans of $5,000 to $25,000 to business owners who otherwise might not have access to funding, our partners at VisionFund International provide technical assistance to help those business owners scale and provide gainful employment for people in their communities. The SGB Bond supports largely women-run businesses that have the potential to create real economic prosperity.
There are several Social Innovation Challenges, organized by region. Every year in Canada, the U.S. and another country (this year, the Philippines), teams of innovators are presented with information on a social or environmental problem. Those teams then submit business plans that outline how they might solve the problem while building a sustainable business that could boost the local economy. Finally, the top five teams compete in a pitch competition with the goal of earning funding and technical support for the winning project.
Our Social Venture Fund supports entrepreneurs working in developing contexts. It leverages World Vision’s vast network of staff and partners in over 100 countries, to provide local knowledge, market linkages and business support services to these entrepreneurs, who are working hard to better the lives of millions. The Social Venture Fund currently accepts donations.