Emerging Markets / January 1, 2019

Empowerment, Social Guarantees & Transparency

The keys to ending global poverty and boosting shared prosperity are individual empowerment and a guarantee of social minimums. Individual empowerment takes a different shape in every country and community. Sometimes it is an association of twenty women contributing 25 cents every week to a common fund destined towards supporting the entrepreneurial spirit of one of its members in the form of an interest-free loan. Other times, it means conducting soil studies in communities with no formal water supply in order to determine where to dig the wells that will feed a two-hectare vegetable garden. Yet again, it may take the form of incorporating coconut palm trees into a cattle farm so that the operation employs field workers year-round, allowing them to remain in the district, supporting their families.

Empowerment, Social Guarantees & Transparency

Concurrently, the eradication of poverty and global prosperity cannot be achieved without a guarantee of certain minimums such as peace, physical safety, basic health, and literacy. In order to secure these basic guarantees, states and governments across the world need to be effectively present throughout their national territory, particularly in peripheral and rural communities. State presence is achieved through the establishment of basic infrastructure such as roads, schools, health clinics, and police outposts.

In this regard, Farmfolio’s team and development model support many such initiatives and projects throughout Latin America. Working with local and national stakeholders, our operations overcome traditional investment barriers, such as cultural and language differences in order to build meaningful connections with partners and counterparts worldwide. Communication clearly helps ensure that there is transparency in every project, which ensures a positive impact for the target community, facilitate accountability towards our investors and our communities. Similarly, communication and transparency enhance the prospect of project replication in the future.

Moreover, communicating with partners and stakeholders in a way that is transparent and effective is extremely beneficial to the culture and morale of an organization as well as the communities and individuals that we serve. Being responsible stewards of the resources entrusted to the organization allows it to continue to grow and better fight against poverty by empowering prosperity. Moreover, teaching others about the potential and value of transparency through example, through projects, is another way in which organizations can leverage their own soft power beyond the traditional mechanisms.

Our positive experience working in Colombia’s Cordoba department as well as Panama, where capital injections for crop diversification in one farm have prompted other farms to independently engage in similar diversification efforts, inspires us to continue growing and moving forward. In these unique locations, the impact of new ideas and a single investment multiplies to transform the landscape and economy of an entire region. This efficient, multiplying effect can only be achieved through field research, dialogue with community leaders, and scientific data crunching.

(Read more about Interest Rates and Economic Outlook into 2019)