Levantando Chile Fund

by Nonprofit Enterprise & Self Sustainability Team
Sales, Marketing & Leadership Workshop
Sales, Marketing & Leadership Workshop

Greetings from Santiago, Chile! Once again, it is a pleasure to share some exciting updates about the final days of this successful project working towards our goal of supporting 372 producers and artisans from southern Chile who were severely affected by the 2010 earthquake and tsunami. Here are some of the latest developments:

Social Enterprise Competition:

 Investment Plans: In our previous update, we reported that NESsT had devoted significant efforts towards finalizing sound investment plans with each of the winners of our special Social Enterprise Competition. At this point, the investment plans have been finalized and approved by NESsT and our partners at the Multilateral Investment Fund.  

 Monitoring Performance: We also reported that we were providing advice and support to finalize the “Performance Monitoring Tool” (PMT), which is a unique tool used by NESsT to measure progress, performance and social impact.  This tool sets out very specific, measurable objectives and goals for each social enterprise and each newcomer to our portfolio must learn how to use it. At this point, we are happy to announce that all 3 winners of the social enterprise competition have finalized their PMT’s.

Sales, Marketing and Leadership Workshop: on October 9 and 10, NESsT took the entire Chile portfolio (9 social enterprises) to a wonderful retreat lodge in the Andes Mountains for two days. This was the first time that the 3 winners of the social enterprise competition for earthquake-affected regions participated in portfolio activities. As such, a formal introduction ensued.

During these two days in the mountain, NESsT held two training sessions led by professional consultants and supported by the enterprise development team in Chile: Ignacio Blanco, Felipe Cordero and Rodolfo Madriaga. Both workshops sought to improve the social enterprises´ capacity to sell, as well as their entrepreneurs’ leadership skills. On October 9, NESsT held the sales and marketing workshop led by professional business consultant Mauricio Espina. Mr. Espina especially designed a workshop that was meant to strengthen the skills of the social enterprise leaders. The workshop dealt with the toughest issues described by social entrepreneurs as the main barriers to the success of their social enterprises. The goal was to identify and solve problems and to help them implement their business models.  

The following day NESsT brought Mr. Hector Vega, a professional organizational psychologist with more than 10 years of experience in human resources. The 1 day workshop dealt with very common problems faced by social entrepreneurs: how to lead organizational conversations about productivity, how to ask questions that add value to the experience of a worker, how to ask and promise things to workers and how to create safe emotional spaces. Most importantly, the workshop helped social entrepreneurs develop their skills in appreciative leadership skills.

As a refresher, these are the winners and their social enterprise ideas:

Apiunisexta: A store specialized in providing high-quality products for beekeeping activities. It will sell a range of products, such as health items made from honey, food for bee colonies, machinery, and equipment for beekeepers in the O´Higgins Region, to support the needs of producers and increase the market for their products. Beekeepers were severely affected by the earthquake because they lost their production, tools and infrastructure prior to the harvesting season, which meant that they were left with little or no income for that year and with unpaid loans that they expected to pay with revenues from that season.

Surmaule: Surmaule developed a new social enterprise idea to provide its services to government institutions, NGOs and any interested persons about the practice and methodology behind community development initiatives. This social enterprise will be based in the City of Talca, which was severely affected by the earthquake. In addition, Talca is a city with where few professionals can access the latest knowledge and best practices from the field of development.

Ludovico Rutten Foundation:  A business that will develop high-quality welders, providing them with skills and a certification that enables them to better perform their work and ensures the quality of their work. The social enterprise will provide this service locally at very affordable prices. Also located in Talca, this social enterprise will serve communities located in poor and marginalized parts of the city. Given their socioeconomic vulnerability, these areas were also the most affected by the earthquake.

 Social Enterprise Day –Chile 2013:

On December 17th, 2013, NESsT was the host of one of the most important social enterprise events in Chile. The 1-day event sought to promote the development of social enterprises in Chile. To do so, we brought a fantastic keynote speaker: Peter Holbrook from Social Enterprise UK. We gathered the best speakers and social enterprises around the country . We developed a very engaging plan for the day that included panels and presentations about the latest research by NESsT on funding for social enterprises, policy to suppport social enterprises and the establishment of social investment funds.

During the first part of event, NESsT introduced Andes Velasco, former Minister of Finance, economics professor and politician, who began the day by presenting his views on the economic and social challenges of Chile. Then Peter Holbrook went on stage to tell the 200-people audience about the state of social entrepreneurship in the United Kingdom. The lessons from the UK are ncredibly relevant to the Chilean context.

The second part of the day was devoted 100% to the Levantando Chile Fund. We began the afternoon sessions with a presentation about the history and achievements of the fund by Ignacio Blanco, Country Director and responsible for the implementation of this project. After presenting the program, we invited the 3 winners of  the social enteprise competition to come on stage for an award ceremony. Nicolet Etchart, co founder and CEO of NESsT awarded the prizes. They also received the praise and encouragement from Patricio Santander, leader of Upasol, a social enterprise that in northern Chile that collects and processes reciclable material to fund a physical rehabilitation center. It was a great moment of the event. Finally, their work for over a year in the business plans paid off and they are entering the NESsT social enterprise portfolio.

Ignacio Blanco then delivered a presentation about the performance of social enteprises in natural disasters. This was followed by a panel comprised of Matias Rojas (Socialab), Sebastian Cantuarias (Proyecto Propio), Pablo Schuster (Desafío Levantemos Chile) and Peter Holbrook (SE UK).

Social Enterprise Day 2013
Social Enterprise Day 2013
2013 Seminar Brochure
2013 Seminar Brochure

Hello! Greetings from Santiago, Chile! Once again, it is a pleasure to share some exciting updates from our project. As mentioned in previous reports, our program is nearing its end. Nonetheless, activities continue and we keep on working towards our goal of supporting 372 producers and artisans from southern Chile who were severely affected by the 2010 earthquake and tsunami. Likewise, we keep on working to develop social enterprises in the affected regions. Here are some of the latest developments:

Social Enterprise Competition:

Our latest Social Enterprise Competition in the regions affected by the earthquake awarded three great social enterprise ideas as winners. Since then, we have devoted our efforts towards finalizing sound investment plans with each of the winners.

The three competition winners have finalized investment plans. We are currently providing them with advice and support to finalize the “Performance Monitoring Tool” (PMT). The PMT is a unique tool used by NESsT to measure progress, performance and social impact.  This tool sets out very specific, measurable, objectives and goals for each social enterprise and each newcomer to our portfolio must learn how to use it. Once PMT’s are finalized, the three new winners will sign an agreement with NESsT that will make them official members of our global portfolio of social enterprises. As a refresher, these are the winners and their social enterprise ideas:

Apiunisexta: A store specialized in providing high-quality products for beekeeping activities. It will sell a range of products, such as health items made from honey, food for bee colonies, machinery, and equipment for beekeepers in the O´Higgins Region, to support the needs of producers and increase the market for their products. Beekeepers were severely affected by the earthquake because they lost their production, tools and infrastructure prior to the harvesting season, which meant that they were left with little or no income for that year and with unpaid loans that they expected to pay with revenues from that season.

Surmaule: Surmaule developed a new social enterprise idea to provide its services to government institutions, NGOs and any interested persons about the practice and methodology behind community development initiatives. This social enterprise will be based in the City of Talca, which was severely affected by the earthquake. In addition, Talca is a city with where few professionals can access the latest knowledge and best practices from the field of development.

Ludovico Rutten Foundation:  A business that will develop high-quality welders, providing them with skills and a certification that enables them to better perform their work and ensures the quality of their work. The social enterprise will provide this service locally at very affordable prices. Also located in Talca, this social enterprise will serve communities located in poor and marginalized parts of the city. Given their socioeconomic vulnerability, these areas were also the most affected by the earthquake.

Impact, Lessons Learned and Best Practices in Post-Earthquake Initiatives:

As mentioned in our previous report NESsT planned to host a national event to discuss and hightlight interesting post-earthquake interventions carried out by civil society organizations, government agencies and other institutions. The idea was to host an event that not only highlighted, but also analyzed and discerned between succesful practices and not-so-successful practices in a post-natural disaster context.

On September 13, 2013, we held a seminar called “Reconstruction-Encounter: Impact, Lessons and Best Practices in Post-eartquake Initiatives”. Organized by NESsT, in partnership with the Recontruction Observatory and the Student Social Responsibility Unit of the University, the event was held at the School of Economics and Business of the University of Chile. For months we researched and scouted for great initiatives – big or small -  to highlight.

The event presented innovative and interesting findings from each initiative and ended with a panel that discussed lessons and best practices that everyone involved in reconstruction efforts should pay attention to. Our guest presenters were Nicole Etchart (Co-CEO, NESsT), Pablo Schuster (Executive Director, Desafio Levantemos Chile), Guillermo Scallan (Social Innovation Director, Avina Foundation), Sebastian Cantuarias (Social Director, Proyecto Propio) and Paulina Vergara (Researcher, Reconstruction Observatory and Institute of Public Affairs, University of Chile). Each presenter provided an overiew of the reconstruction efforts and views on the progress and process thus far, highligthing lessons that their organization has learned along the way.

The group and panel reached the following conclusions:

  1. It is imporant to connect with local perspectives and organizations in order to ensure a reconstruction initiative takes into account and responds appropiately to the needs of the local population.
  2. It is important that an initiative channels funds to the affected area by hiring people who lost their jobs, prioritizing local purchases over retail purchases in order to reactivate local economies.
  3. Quickly implement a strategy that not only attempts to provide infrastructure, but also other support, such as psychological suppport, income recovery strategies, long-term education and health.
  4. Strategies should be long-term and should aim at preventing an exacerbation of poverty in the short term and not only restablish incomes or solve a particular problem created by a disaster, but also improve the quality of life in the mid-term.
  5. Programs should attempt to incorporate a baseline study,  as well as establish goals and indicators.
  6. It is the role of the state to create a national strategy to deal with natural disasters. In order to be prepared, governments should adjust its institutions and systems in order to be efficient, quick and to empower and facilitate the work of other key players who can contribute to a quick recovery.
  7. Governments and organizations should work  simultaneausly in the completion of plans to prevent, or at the least, anticipate disasters, in paralel with plans to react to a disaster and its effects.
  8. The coordination of different efforts is extremely important in order to take advantage of economies of scale; to prevent the duplication of efforts that reduce their respective impacts if implemented in parallel; and to ensure that lessons and learnings are quickly incorporated in order to identify best and innovative practices.
  9. Governments should act as facilitators of efforts , not as inhibitors. They should create platforms to inform key stakeholders about requests to provide services to the state.
  10. Because natural disasters are common in Chile and beyond, lessons and best practices should constantly be sistematized and widely shared beyond national borders.  
Internal Evaluation Workshop
Internal Evaluation Workshop

Greetings from Santiago, Chile!

We are very pleased to share some exciting updates from our project! As we reach mid-year in what is the final year of the program, we continue working towards our goal of supporting 373 producers and artisans from southern Chile who were severely affected by the 2010 earthquake and tsunami, by developing social enterprises in the affected regions.

Here are some of the latest developments and impact:

Social Enterprise Competition:

Our Social Enterprise Competition in the regions affected by the earthquake has finally ended. Four remaining organizations submitted their business plans, which have been reviewed by NESsT’s business development professionals in the region, as well members of our Business Advisory Network (BAN) and corporate volunteers from JP Morgan’s Chile office. We are happy to announce that the three winners are:

Apiunisexta: A store specialized in providing high-quality products for beekeeping activities. It will sell a range of products, such as health items made from honey, food for bee colonies, machinery, and equipment for beekeepers in the O´Higgins Region, to support the needs of producers and increase the market for their products.

Surmaule: Surmaule developed a new social enterprise idea to provide its services to government institutions, NGOs and any interested persons about the practice and methodology behind community development initiatives.

Ludovico Rutten Foundation:  A business that will develop high-quality welders, providing them with skills and a certification that enables them to better perform their work and ensures the quality of their work. The social enterprise will provide this service locally at very affordable prices.

These three enterprises will soon enter the NESsT Portfolio where over the next three years, they will receive funding and technical advice from NESsT experts to help them achieve their goals of running powerful social enterprise ideas.  

On the first week of August 2013, NESsT will host a national event to discuss and hightlight interesting post-earthquake interventions carried out by civil society organizations, government agencies and other institutions. The idea is to host an event that will not only highlight, but also analyze and discern between succesful practices and not-so-successful practices in a post-natural disaster context. We have already began preliminary conversations with prominent thinktanks and universities, as well as other key agencies in reconstruction efforts.

We look forward to reporting and sharing pictures of this event with you!

Links:

Hello from Santiago, Chile!

Thanks to you, our Levantando Chile Fund supporters, NESsT wrapped up 2012 on a high note and began 2013 with continued progress towards our goal to continue supporting 373 producers and artisans from southern Chile who were severely affected by the 2010 earthquake and tsunami.

Here are some of the latest developments and impact:

  • NESsT’s long-time donor and international partner, the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), completed an evaluation of the implementation and impact of our Levantando Chile Fund program.  The evaluation collected opinions, data, general and specific information about the Fund´s impact, performance and lessons.  The success of the program was positively reflected in the overall evaluation and feedback provided demonstrated the genuine effect the program has had on its beneficiaries.
  • In Chile´s Bio-Bio Region, NESsT, in partnership with Sepade -- a local NGO that tackles poverty and education problems -- held a closing ceremony for the program on December 6, 2012. The ceremony was held in the City of Lota, a historic city that today faces many social problems that originated when the main source of work in the city -- coal mines -- closed its operations. Throughout the ceremony, NESsT and Sepade told the story of their collaboration, common objectives and vision. Both organizations highlighted the strengths and shortcomings of the program and were open to receiving feedback from our beneficiaries. In fact, the ceremony allowed for meaningful exchanges between NESsT, Sepade and the more than 20 beneficiaries that attended. Beatriz Heins from Sepade stated:  ”The program has been a way for Sepade to serve the local community in a way that it hadn´t been able to serve before.” Prior to the ceremony, NESsT and Sepade provided our beneficiaries with an opportunity to participate in a workshop to help participants improve their well-being through psychological and physical self-care techniques. This work was done previously with artisans in Concepcion and beekeepers in San Fernando.
  • NESsT has been a strong advocate of measuring the impact and evaluating the progress of the work done by the organizations and beneficiaries that we serve, allowing  us to improve the quality of our services.. Fortunately, our partners at the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) and Inter-American Foundation (IAF) believe the same, and with their support NESsT conducted a baseline study at the beginning of the program. The study sought to know more about our beneficiaries, their needs and experiences, so that NESsT and its partners could respond with a high-quality program that responded accordingly. Since then, our partners have measured our impact. Recently, with the invaluable support of the MIF, NESsT hired Mr. Ignacio Rivera, a sociologist with experience in the evaluation of non-profit projects. Over the next 3 months, Mr. Rivera will survey every beneficiary in our program and speak to our partner organizations, in order to gather and process information about 23-30 indicators. This information will prove incredibly valuable when assessing the real impact of our program. We look forward to sharing the results with you on a future report.
  • NESsT and CEDESUS, our partner organization in Chile´s O’Higgins Region,  hired Mr. Oscar Rojas Connell, an expert consultant with experience in the region. Mr. Rojas was hired to design and edit billboards and publicity for 10 micro entrepreneurs of our program. These tailored designs support marketing efforts outlined in the business plans that each micro entrepreneur produced with the assistance of expert business development consultants previously hired by NESsT..
  • One of the latest activities that NESsT will coordinate with CET, a local partner in Chile’s Bio-Bio region, is providing support for our beneficiaries to attend commercial fairs throughout the region. Most of our beneficiaries are self-employed individuals that work in agriculture, producing and selling products such as  jams and vegetables, and the fairs are invaluable to their success as producers and sellers.  NESsT will provide financial assistance to cover registration fees, transportation and investment in promotional materials.

Social Enterprise Competition:

Our Social Enterprise Competition in the regions affected by the earthquake continues at a strong pace. Participants are now in the final stage of the planning phase of the competition:  business plan.

The four organizations that remain in the competition have submitted their business plans, which have been reviewed by NESsT’s business development professionals. ..  The business plans are now being reviewed by members of our Business Advisory Network (BAN) and other volunteers with strong experience and knowledge about business development. The four remaining participants of the competition include:

Apiunisexta: A store specialized in providing high-quality products for beekeeping activities. It will sell a range of products, such as health items made from honey, food for bee colonies, machinery, and equipment for beekeepers in the O´Higgins Region, to support the needs of producers and increase the market for their products.

Surmaule: Surmaule developed a new social enterprise idea to provide its services to  government institutions, NGOs and any interested persons about the practice and methodology behind community development initiatives. Ludovico Rutten Foundation:  A business that will develop high-quality welders, providing them with skills and a certification that enables them to better perform their work and ensures the quality of their work. The social enterprise will provide this service locally at very affordable prices.

Manzana Verde:  This social enterprise consists of creating a school for adults who were not able to complete their elementary or high school education. At this school, they can raise their level of general education while also pursuing a technical degree in agro-ecology.

In April, NESsT will announce the Social Enterprise Competition winners who will be receiving venture grants and will enter the NESsT Portfolio for up to 5 years to continue receiving support from NESsT to grow their enterprises and increase their impact.

Mercado Central de Talca logo
Mercado Central de Talca logo

Hello from Santiago, Chile!

We are once again very glad to communicate with you, our special supporters, to report on our progress. Our continued focus is the recovery and increase of income of 373 producers and artisans from southern Chile whose livelihoods and communities were damaged by the 2010 earthquake and tsunami.

Three months ago, we announced that we were nearing the final stages of our assistance to these 373 producers. However, due to some scheduling challenges, our business development work will continue for a little longer.

Here are some of the latest developments and impacts that NESsT has had:

  • Cristian Avaca, an expert business and marketing consultant hired by NESsT to develop a marketing strategy for the Central Market of Talca, has completed his assistance to the artisans, micro-entrepreneurs and producers in the Market. He worked closely with our beneficiaries and our partner in Talca, ONG Surmaule, to implement a series of activities that provide more visibility and increased sales. As a result, the market today has a thorough business plan and vendors are able to analyze the strengths and weaknesses in the segment of the market they serve. The consultancy and effort from Mr. Avaca, Surmaule and NESsT provided media attention for the market activities, its businesses, and especially to the serious infrastructure problems that they continue to face while the City of Talca decides what will become of the damaged building that was the Central Market of Talca for so many decades. 
  • In Chile´s Bio-Bio Region, NESsT, in partnership with Sepade (a local NGO that tackles poverty and education problems) hired Patricia Yevenes to deliver a series of workshops to help participants improve well-being through self-care psychological and physical techniques. This work was done previously with artisans in Concepcion and beekeepers in San Fernando. Despite the fact that the earthquake happened in 2010, this knowledge and the techniques have been welcomed by our beneficiaries because they complement business knowledge. In areas where self-employment is already difficult due to isolation and natural disasters, this type of assistance strengthens entrepreneurial capacities, as it deals directly with many of the social problems that inhibit personal growth. On Thursday December 6th, Patricia will deliver her workshop and Sepade and NESsT will host an official closing ceremony with local authorities, partners, local media and our committed and exemplary beneficiaries. 
  • Also in Coronel, Lota and San Pedro de la Paz, three towns in the BioBio Region, NESsT and Sepade hired Ms. Carmen Diez. Ms. Diez is a designer with years of experience in the region. She was hired by NESsT to give our micro-entrepreneurs a boost in marketing, an area that is so difficult for them to invest in because of the marginal profits. Carmen has worked hard to design logos, flyers and other essential marketing materials for the businesses of our beneficiaries. NESsT´s plan is for this material to be placed in storefronts and commercialization channels.  Carmen has designed logos, magnets, menus, storefront signs and labels for 20 of our beneficiaries. 
  • In Concepcion, NESsT and TPH Concepcion, a local partner organization, have implemented an action plan designed at the beginning of the project. In these 16 months of work, NESsT helped artisans with business administration workshops; fair trade certification assistance for an artisan´s store called Manos del Bío-Bío; and provided individual business administration and development assistance to 70 people. This one-on-one assistance and business plan development is essential to help our artisans have clear goals and plans for their work. They have welcomed these by actively participating and inquiring about the tools available to them to attract new customers and capital to their small businesses. For NESsT, working with them has been a pleasure, not only because they work hard to support their families despite the hardships, but also because they foster and nurture the unique cultural expressions of the Chilean south.
  • One interesting achievement has been the production of four short videos to strengthen our campaign and to highlight the work of our beneficiaries. Pablo Vergara, an expert film producer from the BioBio region, joined our team to produce these videos. The videos not only showcase our project, but also provide context for an external audience to understand the difficulties faced by small producers and artisans across southern Chile after the earthquake. The videos were showcased 3 times per day during November at a local station in Coronel, and will be showcased all over the internet! We hope you can also join in and help us spread these wonderful testimonies.   Please click on the enclosed links below to see the videos.  
  • The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), our long-time donor and international partner, is finishing the process of conducting a thorough evaluation of NESsT´s Levantando Chile Fund. The evaluation sought to collect opinions, data, general and specific information about the Fund´s impact, performance and lessons. As such, an expert evaluator has been interviewing the NESsT team, local partner organizations, social enterprises, beneficiaries and authorities. Though the process has not finished, we can announce that our beneficiaries have shown high levels of gratitude and satisfaction with the work that you have made possible with your support. More on this report will be available soon at the MIF´s and NESsT´s website.

 

Social Enterprise Competition:

As our Social Enterprise Competition continues and as social enterprise ideas gain strength, NESsT is currently evaluating feasibility studies of the four remaining competitors, which will reviewed by expert members of our Business Advisory Network (BAN).  As announced in our previous report, NESsT held its third and final workshop in the planning stages of the social enterprises we have been mentoring and supporting during 2012. Our business plan workshop is a two-day workshop led by NESsT´s social enterprise experts to assist civil society organizations in the development of their business plans. The work is the culmination of a year-long process, where break-even points are calculated, objectives are set and business projections are calculated.  The workshop was held in Talca on November 22nd and 23rd and brought together four organizations and their social enterprise ideas:  

Apiunisexta: A store specialized in providing high-quality products for beekeeping activities. It will sell a range of products, such as health items made from honey, food for bee colonies, machinery, and equipment for beekeepers in the O´Higgins Region, to support the needs of producers and increase the market for their products.

Surmaule: An educational services firm, which will offer specialized services to improve pedagogical and technical skills of teachers at all levels inside educational institutions. It seeks to improve the administration of educational institutions, as well as improve school environments and test results.  

Ludovico Rutten Foundation:  A business that will develop high-quality welders, providing them with skills and a certification that enables them to better perform their work and ensures the quality of their work. The social enterprise will provide this service locally at very affordable prices.

Manzana Verde:  This social enterprise consists of creating a school for adults who were not able to complete their elementary or high school education. At this school, they can raise their level of general education while also pursuing a technical degree in agroecology.

Our social enterprise teams are now working to complete their business plans with NESsT´s one-on-one assistance. Three of the four remaining competitors will be awarded an invitation to join the NESsT Portfolio in March 2013, where they will receive financial and technical assistance for up to five years.

Closing Ceremony
Closing Ceremony

Links:

 

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Organization Information

Nonprofit Enterprise & Self Sustainability Team

Location: San Francisco, CA - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.nesst.org
Nonprofit Enterprise & Self Sustainability Team
Project Leader:
Barb Alvarado
Providencia, Santiago Chile

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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