Empowering entrepreneurs

Self-employed entrepreneurs and small businesses in The Gambia very often operate as a family business out of their own property. Depending on the orientation and the services offered, this can be a house with an equipped office or studio, a kitchen, an attached workshop, a courtyard or a completely enclosed courtyard with storage and safe shelter facilities.

These individually equipped properties are called „compounds“ in The Gambia. Hence, the term „compound business“ used for this line of work is derived from this understanding and the lived reality on the ground.

In connection with our focus on training and empowerment as well as regenerative agriculture, we see attractive professional perspectives here as well as good development opportunities for crafts, trade and logistics. Through the expected creation of new, qualified jobs, we expect at the same time a steady improvement in income for our primary target groups – especially young adults and women.

In doing so, we promote the establishment and expansion of local and regional professional networks that are basically cooperative and decentralised. In this way, the financing of investments, the design of work processes, logistics and distribution along the entire value chain can be organised in a division of labour and quality-oriented manner. At the same time, a modernised basis for mutual, entrepreneurial and community-oriented assistance is created.

In the predominantly Muslim culture of the country, we consciously understand joint, entrepreneurial action as an opportunity for inter-religious and inter-denominational „ecumenism in action“. In this way, we are moving in the proven tradition of Friedrich Wilhelm Raiffeisen, the „mutual aid societies“ he initially founded, as well as Hermann Schulze-Delitzsch and Wilhelm Haas, who played a decisive role in shaping the cooperative system that emerged from them.