Social Enterprise Approach
Scale and Sustainability
Scale and sustainability are considered fundamentally important indicators of success for our programmes; however achieving both the afore-mentioned with donor funding alone is not possible due to the fluctuating availability and size of donor funds. Therefore, DWN applies a social enterprise approach whenever possible by selling services or products and reinvesting proceeds directly into the respective programmes.
Our Mission – a statement for an enterprise and impact focused approach
- Innovation: We aim to find the most effective, innovative and efficient ways to make human settlements more sustainable and inclusive.
- Focus on core issues: We develop, design and implement programmes that focus on core development issues and needs.
- Solution oriented: We strive to find elegant solutions to complex challenges.
- Social enterprise approach: We strive to employ a social enterprise (SE) approach wherever possible to enable the sustainable growth of our interventions.
- National coverage: We aim to establish all our programmes in all regions in the countries where we work.
- Regional expansion: We are in the process of opening offices in Zambia and Zimbabwe, initiating the same programmes as in Namibia.
Specific Social Enterprise activities in Namibia
In the ECD programme, we develop, publish and sell children’s books. While copies are delivered free-of-charge to disadvantaged communities, we are beginning to sell the same publications to the wider public. The income of those sales are reinvested in developing and publishing new publications.
In the Land & Housing Programme, we charge a fee on every residential plot sold. The proceeds enable the further growth of the programme in order to benefit disadvantaged urban residents nationwide.
In the Sanitation Programme, we sell high quality and appropriate solar and sanitation related products through our volunteer network. The proceeds sustain the network and allow the provision of transport subsidies to volunteers.
TIPPS FOR NOTING
What is a social enterprise approach?
Simplistically, it is a business approach to solving community problems and to achieve sustainability. In other words, a business model is developed to sustain a programme, be it sanitation or ECD, rather than being continuously dependent on donor funds for continuity or growth. The difference to a traditional business approach is that surplus generated is re-invested in the social programme expansion.