The Spirit in Action Small Business Fund (SBF) is a locally coordinated process through which hundreds of people in developing countries are growing in self-sufficiency and hope.
Local coordinators identify potential business groups in their community and invite the new members to attend a training session and create a business plan. Sessions include training in establishing and running their businesses, record-keeping, as well as decision-making as a group, consensus agreement and praying together.
Each family or business group receives a $150 microgrant to start a business. The initial grant is $100, followed by $50 three months later. Typical businesses are farming, small stores, baking, fish sales, palm oil production, petroleum resale, etc. The groups, with the assistance of the coordinators, provide Spirit in Action with reports at three months and one year to track their progress, successes and challenges.
Read about how our SBF program stands out from other microfinance organizations! Then, read inspiring stories about successful small businesses.
Sharing the Gift
“We take small amounts and give entrepreneurs in developing countries the opportunity to succeed. We don’t ask that they pay us back but that they use their success to give someone else in their community a chance to get ahead.” – Board Member Boyd Cothran, describing Spirit in Action’s Sharing the Gift program
As people begin to help themselves they want to help others too! Sharing the Gift gives each grant recipient a chance to also empower a friend or neighbor by setting aside a portion of their income, sharing the skills they have learned, or contributing some of their harvest with another group to help them begin their own small businesses. This pay-it-forward aspect of SIA’s work extends Del’s vision of upholding the value of each human being and nurturing connections among people.
This program has been particularly successful in Malawi, where the gift of one pig led to 19 little piglets and enough profit for the Mahowe family to replace their leaky thatched roof with iron sheets. Click here to read their story.
Small Business Fund Coordinators
The SBF Coordinators are the eyes and ears of Spirit in Action on the ground. They graciously volunteer their time to lead and encourage the business groups. They work closely with each new business group and together – prayerfully, compassionately and creatively – they find solutions amongst the challenges.
“I am so excited when it comes to sharing the stories and impact in my community since SIA SBF started in Kenya. Most importantly SIA gave me an opportunity of serving the community that has brought a positive impact to the society and new good experiences to me too.” –Dennis Kiprop explains his experiences coordinating SIA SBF businesses in Kenya.
Current Coordinators by Country
*listed with the year they joined the Spirit in Action SBF team
- KENYA, Eldoret – Dennis Kiprop (2007)
- KENYA, Nairobi – Wambui Nguyo (2013)
- KENYA, Nairobi – Jeremiah Mzee (2016)
- MALAWI, Mzimba – Canaan Gondwe (2004)
- MALAWI, Mzimba – Hastings Phiri (2015)
- UGANDA, Kole – Naomi Ayot (2015)