4 billion people do not have access to safe drinking water, and 2 billion people suffer from nutrient deficiency. For more than 10 years, Danone Communities has been empowering innovative social entrepreneurs to achieve sustainable social impact.
We do so by investing in social businesses as minority shareholders, providing capital, technical and managerial expertise, as well as networking.
Why does it matter?
Through its investments in social businesses around the world, Danone Communities supports social businesses in 14 countries that fight against malnutrition and bring access to safe drinking water. Danone Communities believes inclusive businesses can impact millions of people around the world.
How does it work?
To reinforce its impact, Danone Communities’ strategy relies on two pillars:
- Scaling up the social impact coming from the existing portfolio. The social businesses are more and more robust and scale their impact. For instance, in 2018, the Programme Malin in France has been officially supported by the French government as a concrete solution to fight poverty, thus being part of the French “poverty plan”. With Danone Communities and Bledina’s support, and in association with the French Red Cross and the French Pediatrics Association, the Programme Malin will reach 160.000 French families.
- Enriching its portfolio with new investments. Through new investments in 3 social businesses supporting access to safe drinking water, Danone Communities is soon tripling its social impact, from 1 million daily consumers today to 3 million daily consumers!
How does this project create value?
Impacting more and more people around the world means creating more jobs, more upstream and downstream activity around the social businesses, and improving the health of millions of people through better nutrition and access to safe drinking water.
More specifically: Danone Communities has been a catalyst in spreading the pioneering model called Safe Water Enterprises (SWE). The approach is proven to be a cost-effective mechanism to deliver safely treated drinking water to poor communities. A recently conducted study (led by Danone Communities and other partners including Aqua for All, the Hilton Foundation, the Osprey Foundation, The Family Stone Foundation) shows the untapped potential of the SWE model that could benefit 200 million people.
In 2018, Danone Communities created a network between social businesses that benefit from each other experiences. It brought together 48 people from 14 organizations during a Learning Expedition in Uganda. Following this Learning Expedition, 2 new pilots are now emerging and are being tested, and concrete synergies (IT tools, marketing tools…) are shared.
Photo credit © Sandro di Carlo Darsa