An organisation in Paraguay that aims to boost education and entrepreneurship for young people is the winner of this year’s Nestlé Prize in Creating Shared Value.
Nestlé awarded the prize to Fundación Paraguaya de Cooperatión y Desarrollo for its ‘agricultural self-sufficient school’ project which ensures students receive technical and business training on top of their normal academic curriculum.
The announcement was made at the Creating Shared Value Forum 2012 in New Delhi, India.
The ‘self-sufficient school’ initiative sets up micro-businesses based on the school premises that teach teenagers the skills employers need.
Each school, together with the non-profit organisation Fundación Paraguaya, creates a ‘teaching and production’ business plan to define which small enterprises it will set up.
These micro-businesses range from agricultural technical assistance, milk production, farming, organic gardening, hotel services, bee keeping and chicken egg production.
Teachers also help the students to develop skills to run their own businesses.
Money generated from the enterprises enables the schools to be self-sufficient and cover their operating costs – such as salaries, administration and school maintenance – without the need for government funding.
The project led by Fundación Paraguaya has already reached more than 500 students in Paraguay.
It was first established in 2003 at the Escuela Agrícola San Francisco. It has been financially self-sufficient for more than five years.
Two other schools in the country are implementing the programme.
Worldwide over 50 schools in 30 countries in Latin America and Africa are replicating the project. This year about 25 schools in Tanzania, Africa, are also developing the model.
The Nestlé CSV Prize funding will help to scale up the project in Paraguay.
The funds will be used to recreate the winning model in the Paraguayan city of San Pedro.
Creating Shared Value Prize
Every two years, up to three innovative schemes related to nutrition, water or rural development are shortlisted for the Nestlé Creating Shared Value Prize.
The CSV Prize highlights examples of Creating Shared Value (CSV) in which the funding award helps innovative and commercially-viable initiatives to scale up and achieve financial sustainability.
Building on Nestlé’s foundations of compliance and sustainability, CSV is the company’s approach to doing business. It aims to create value for the company’s shareholders at the same time as for those communities where it operates.
The Prize is open to individuals, governmental and non-governmental organisations, academia and social enterprises.
The winner is selected by the Nestlé CSV Advisory Board, and is awarded up to CHF 500,000 (more than USD 530,000) to scale up or replicate its project.
This year, more than 600 applications from 76 countries were received. The Board selected an overall winner and two runners-up.
Runners up include a non-profit organisation based in Lebanon called arcenciel. It is helping farmers and small food-processing business owners in the country to improve sustainable agricultural crops.
Another runner up is Excellent Development, a non-profit organisation in the United Kingdom. It helps farmers and their families in Kenya, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Uganda to gain access to clean water, build sand dams, and lead soil and water conservation activities.
Prize winning partnership
iDE Cambodia was the winner of the first Nestlé CSV Prize in 2010.
It recruits and trains rural business people to become Farmer Business Advisors who can then work closely with small-scale farmers in an area, and through that direct access, spread a better understanding of good farming practices.
The programme is helping advisors become successful entrepreneurs. Currently more than 100 advisors are working with 15,000 farmers.
Nominations are now open for the 2014 Nestlé CSV Prize. The closing date is March 31, 2013.