Micro loans - Direct Investment

 

Profile of investments being promoted by the Label

Investment targets

 

Financial investments …
Laying the foundation stone of an organic food project – Philippines, 2010

Laying the foundation stone of an organic food project – Philippines, 2010

 
… providing cash for a range of uses, including purchase of fixed assets, expansion financing, working capital and seed money.
 
 
 
 
The funds should exclusively be channelled to mid- to long-term investment’s needs.
The main target is small to medium-sized organisations, as this is the type of structures that can easily capitalize on operational efficiencies, create jobs, serves as the engine for local economic growth and effect lasting change.
The sectors to look at may be local activities (non-exhaustive list) that deliver sustainable solutions (products and services) :

… taking care of human health

Examples :

  • farms using local resources and promoting local products, organic food ….
  • sustainable forestry and water supply
  • basic medical equipment / devices for first help
  • information tools / training material for sensibilization of first care
  • ecotourism
… (or) taking care of everybody’s conditions of living

Examples :

  • housing furniture and garment manufacturing using local resources and environment-friendly processes
  • set-up of smooth mobility solutions (such as transport sharing systems at a community level)
  • community-based renewable energy
  • any craft activities favoring environmental/social-friendly techniques and systems
  • set-up of sheltered workshops (ateliers protégés)
  • services to the elderly or disabled people (delivery of meals, taxi services, household tasks, …)
Other opportunites of investment

The target may be any business activities (small, medium and large companies) being committed to significantly change some of their working processes in order to generate a positive social / environmental impact, inside / outside the company.
A special focus might be put on themes such as :

  • employment including professional reintegration, education to children and disadvantaged young people
  • women empowerment
  • health care

 

Expected impacts

The common feature of the selected investments should be their capacity to generate prosperous living conditions within a community, be it considered in its sociological definition (the family, the members of a minority, …) or in its geographical definition (a district of a town, a village, a valley, …). Prosperity can not be considered without dealing with sustainability. The major components of the sustainability are education, gender equality, environment’s care, health and economic activities taking into account all theses aspects. All in all, sustainability relates to the human security on the long term.
 

 

Types of education and volunteering programmes being promoted by the Label

 

Education and training

Private school for poor people - South Vietnam, 2008
Education is a key-leverage to impact the way of living and build up a sustainable environment for living, working and sharing with others.
Subjects and themes dealing with social responsibility and inspiring a wise behaviour (including the research of applications in everyone’s life) has been for a long time put aside the education system, due to the fact it is considered being linked to morale but not to anything rational. Indeed, social responsibility is typically an underlying (unanswered) question being at the cross road of many knowledge areas : philosophy,sociology, (bio-)technologies, economy …
Dealing with social responsibility raises at the end lots of issues the humankind must bring some response : what is well-being and how to assess it ? how to preserve social equity ? how to take care of the environmental resources ?
At the very end, the last questions are : what is a good investment ? … and also : how to invest ?
The sustainability-related subjects are being increasingly taken into consideration in the education (university) and training (vocational life-long learning) systems, through specific degrees on ecological / social economy ; development aid ; sustainable development ; sustainable finance.
The sectors to look at may be local activities (non-exhaustive list) that deliver sustainable solutions (products and services) :

… taking care of access to education, knowledge and intellectual development

Examples :

  • school and training centres building programmes that support human values and a sustainable approach of live
  • “second chance” vocational schools
  • distribution of books and movies from unknown authors / producers / artists who promote original works against the mainstream cultural industry

The label aims at promoting programmes of education that question the social responsibility and its concrete applications in the economic sector in the way to foster business with responsible impact.
 
 

Volunteering

Training session on a microfinance project – Northern Vietnam, 2009
The Label aims also at encouraging any initiatives supporting or raising awareness on socially responsible projects in the field.
Volunteering initiatives including the involvement of students or any kind of professional skills may fall into the target of the Label.
Every volunteer having significantly contributed to the development or the structuration of a labelled socially responsible project will be granted a “PEERS Direct Investment” certificate.