Beginning in 2008, Indego Africa’s field team has conducted a comprehensive survey each March to compile a range of developmental information for each artisan partner: from quantitative metrics like demographics, income, education levels, and food security, to qualitative indicators like in-depth self perceptions and interviews. This data then forms the basis for benchmarking how effectively our programming is achieving its intended objectives.
Key areas of year-on-year improvement during the period from March 2009 to March 2010 included:
- Increased Income - 111% increase in the number of women earning $1 a day or more
- Greater Food Security - 517% increase in the number of families eating at least 3 meals per day
- Higher Child Education Rate - 800% increase in the number of women reporting that most of the children they care for attend school on a regular basis
- Better Access to Running Water - 330% increase in the number of households with running water
- More Women Using a Household Budget - 158% increase in the number of women setting and following a household budget
- Adequacy of Income Improvement - 760% increase in the number of women who described their income as adequate with respect to their basic needs
Beyond embodying Indego Africa’s commitment to rigorously measuring social impact, our social impact assessments also serve a critical prescriptive function, namely, identifying areas in which we could improve our programming to even better meet developmental performance targets.
If you are looking for reason for further optimism, look no farther than the fact that the SIR does not even reflect social impact during the period since March 2010, a period of substantial across-the-organization growth and which includes for example over half of the aggregate income generated by our artisan partners to date. Never content to rest on our laurels, even at this early date we at Indego Africa are already eagerly awaiting compilation and publication of the results of our fourth annual social impact assessment.
-Conor French and Kristen Waeber
(Photos: at top, the cover of the SIR and, at bottom, charts depicting year-on-year developmental progress in areas related to managing personal finances and food security)