Micro-finance and Enterprise Development
ERuDeF is working with communities to create commercially viable micro-enterprises that conserve wildlife and its habitat while improving the livelihoods of the local people
Environmental micro-enterprises provide communities with economic incentives to conserve their lands and natural resources. Our key areas of intervention include beekeeping, livestock, wildlife domestication, ecotourism, conservation agriculture, marketing, etc. ERuDeF’s proactive work in micro-enterprise development not only recognizes its capacity to serve as an effective tool for conservation development, but also its value as a tool for building demand for Cameroonian products and services. We are using the Pro-poor Enterprises’ Approach
In recent decades, trillions of dollars have been spent to ‘make poverty history’ yet 2 billion people still live on less than US$2 a day (Shell Foundation, 2005). In spite of this, there are however some positive signs in Africa being made that need to be highlighted. The main question is how NGOs and international development partners can intervene to create the conditions that facilitate sustainable and equitable economic growth? This is where since the start of 2006, ERuDeF has been researching and developing a unique model (based on the experiences of other international partners working in Africa and other parts of the world) on how to catalyze and scale-up market and enterprise-based solutions to alleviation in its marginalized communities across Lebialem, Fako, Manyu and Kupe Muanenguba Divisions where ERuDeF is working with these local communities to protect and conserve the endangered biodiversity and threatened habitats
We believe that the growth of private enterprises will offer poor people the hope that there is an economic ladder to personal betterment they can climb by use of personal effort
This model has five main assumptions namely;
i.This is focused on pro-poor stratum of the population. The pro-poor concept of enterprise is inclusive and includes any economic unit that is owned by poor people, employs them, etc.
ii.the enterprises being assisted must be financially viable and should not permanently be dependent on subventions (or outside financial assistance)
iii. The pro-poor enterprise support activities that must have a financially viable model capable of being scaled up using local capital and local capacity.
iv.Pro-poor enterprises must be market oriented
v.Pro-poor enterprises can be viably supported by private corporations and international development partners.
vi.We provide seed money to new enterprises for groups
vii.We provide technical expertise and liaison for groups’ projects to external funding partners.
Building innovative, conservation-based businesses, marketing Cameroonian products and ecotourism attractions on the world stage, supporting the education of young Cameroonians who are future promising conservationists; all of these take resources. It takes expertise to assess micro-business viability and lead policy initiatives. ERuDeF works with the government, individuals, and non-profit partners. ERuDeF is tackling these challenges in order to fulfill the promise of wildlife conservation in Cameroon. Assist ERuDeF build the capacity of the Cameroonian people.