Skoll Foundation

 

One Acre Fund

Skoll Entrepreneur(s): Andrew Youn
Award Year: 2010
Focus Area(s) Addressed: Smallholder Productivity and Food Security

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After serving as a strategic consultant to Fortune 500 companies and spending time in Africa learning about the root causes of rural poverty, Andrew Youn launched One Acre Fund during his MBA studies at Northwestern Kellogg. One Acre Fund takes an integrated value-chain approach to empowering rural farmers in Kenya and Rwanda, providing them with farming inputs, training and capacity building, and access to markets. In less than 4 years, One Acre Fund has helped triple the harvests and double the income per acre for subsistence farm families representing more than 163,000 of the world’s poorest, with the goal of reaching millions more in the next 10 years in sub-Saharan Africa.

IMPACT AS OF JAN. 2014:

  • By the end of 2013, One Acre Fund was serving more than 163,000 families in three countries and is on target to serve 251,000 in 2014.
  • In 2013, a new maize virus emerged in Kenya, which causes near-total crop loss in maize. One Acre Fund quickly adjusted its operations to offer many alternative crops and protect its farmers.
  • One Acre Fund relates to groups with 8-30 members, and provides the seeds and fertilizer as a loan (valued at ~$75) to each farm family in the group with repayment required from farm profits following the subsequent harvest. Groups collaborate, and make mutual support pledges, regarding planting, learning, harvesting and loan repayment.
  • Repayment rates for farmers who purchase farm inputs on credit currently average 98%.
  • Doubling of profit on one acre of land generates approximately 1,000 pounds of additional food, or 2,000 person-meals.
  • The One Acre Fund program achieves 50% reduction in mortality rates for children from birth to age 2 in its areas of operation.
  • They have 1,500 staff.

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