Establish impact fund to support social enterprises – Researcher

Professor Ernest Asamoah

Professor Ernest Asamoah, Lecturer and Researcher at the Regent University College Ghana, has urged policymakers to establish impact fund to support social enterprises in the country.

He said social enterprises lack the needed financial support to run their operations, saying, “there are seemingly non-existent local funding sources for social enterprises in the country.”

Prof Asamoah said this during a sensitization on the need for impact investing policy and fund event in Accra.

The event funded by BUSAC is aimed at engaging stakeholder to discuss, understand and share best practices for a stronger impact investment policy and the ecosystem in Ghana

The Lecturer speaking on a report on Impact Investing in Ghana, the need for Funds and Policy to support Social Enterprises, said: “Even the few funding sources are foreign-owned.”

He said the fund would support the impact investing approach of social enterprises to contribute to sustainable development in communities.

He explained that impact investing was supporting social enterprises to make a valuable and meaningful impact in communities they operated.

He said there was the need for an impact fund and policy to support social enterprises in their operations, adding that, this would make the sector more visible and identifiable.

He noted that there were alternatives to these investments, which policymakers and stakeholders could look at to generate funds in areas such as revenue allocation from the percentage of taxes, and voluntary contributions from corporate organisations, such as mining, oil and gas companies.

“Stakeholders and policymakers can derive alternative financial support from grants and contributions from development financial institutions, 2 per cent levy on alcoholic beverages, 0.5 per cent of the national stabilisation fund, among others,” he said.

Madam Hamdiyiah Ishmael, General Manager for Venture Capital Trust Fund, said there was the need for policy, legal framework, training social enterprises, sensitisation and education on social entrepreneurship modules.

She said this was essential for local investors to support social enterprises through impact investing, adding that, though financial support for them was inadequate there was the need for them to explore alternative financial approaches.

“The Sustainable Development Goals has underscored the need for social enterprises, and impact investing,” she said.

Mr Edwin Zu-Cudjoe, Executive Director of Social Enterprise Ghana admonished social enterprises to prioritise making impacts in their operations, saying, “this would lure investors and financial institutions, particularly local ones, to support them.”

The Social Enterprise Ghana is the network of high impact social enterprises and entrepreneurs operating in Ghana with a registered membership of 590 businesses nationwide operating in climate-smart agribusiness, agroforestry, waste management and recycling among others.

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