The Sisters’ Blended Value Project focuses on supporting Catholic Sisters to build sustainable social enterprises through developing capacities, supporting networks and information hubs and building robust financial services.
This follows a baseline survey project commissioned and funded by Conrad N. Hilton Foundation in early 2021, and conducted in Kenya, Uganda, and Zambia by the SBS team in partnership with ACWECA.
The survey explored the challenges that Catholic sisters face in their ministries in various transformative works that they are involved in as they serve humanity. Some of the challenges established by the study include reduced donor funds, lack of adequate leadership skills and capacities, inadequate financial and organizational sustainability measures etc.
In response to the identified issues, SBS has partnered with ACWECA to design the Sisters’ Blended Value Project whose aim is to develop and enhance skills to bridge the identified gaps; as well as support the sisters in identifying networking opportunities that will broaden their vision and ideas.
SBS also aims at ensuring that sisters will have continued opportunities in social enterprises beyond the grant period and will therefore include capacity building for coaches and mentors as well as access to resources.
This project is being implemented in 4 countries: Kenya, Uganda, Zambia and Tanzania.
The objective of the project is to support Catholic Sisters to build sustainable social enterprises through developing capacities, supporting networks and information hubs, and building robust financial services.
The project will be implemented in line with four strategic pillars:-
1. Individual and Institutional Capacity Building
This pillar will focus on skills development in sustainable social enterprises, the main areas being:
Developing capacities for the sisters in leadership and governance, financial, coaching, mentorship, succession, grants, and project management.
Developing institutional capacity of congregations’ effective organizational structures for sustainability.
This pillar will focus on helping the sisters conduct research, design, develop and incorporate innovative social entrepreneurship models and generate case studies that provide insights to inform best practices in managing sustainable social ministries and enterprises in collaboration with key stakeholders.
Expected research outputs: 4 journal papers, 4 case studies and 4 practitioner reports.
3. Collaborative Networks
This pillar will focus on giving sisters a platform to connect through conferences, communities of practice, partnerships and alumni engagements for purposes of widening their reach and expanding access to learning opportunities.
4. Integrated Financial Solution
This pillar will focus on the establishment of an integrated financial solution (incubator/accelerator platform) that will give Catholic sisters access to funds to aid in further developing their social enterprises.
Conrad N. Hilton Foundation is a non-profit family foundation that was established in 1944 by hotel entrepreneur, Conrad Hilton. In 1950, the Foundation was legally established as a non-profit corporation, separate from Hilton Hotels Corporation. The Foundation provides funds to non-profit organizations working to improve the lives of individuals living in poverty and experiencing material disadvantages throughout the world.
Conrad N. Hilton Foundation is the main funder of the Sisters Blended Value Project, effective 1st December 2021, the project will run over a period of three years.
Association of Consecrated Women in Eastern and Central Africa (ACWECA)
ACWECA is a regional body comprising National Associations of Sisterhoods (Conference of Women Religious Superiors General) from English speaking countries drawn from ten countries of Eastern and Central Africa namely Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Sudan, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe with the Conference of Major Religious Superiors – CMRS of Zimbabwe as an Associate Member. The Association has a membership of over 35,000 sisters from over 280 Religious Institutes, with 41 Superior Generals, whose aim is to provide great spiritual and pastoral impact in the region.
ACWECA will partner with and support SBS in coordinating and implementing of the project activities, create awareness and buy-in among the various sisters and ensure their full participation to realize maximum value for the programmes.
Strathmore University Business School (SBS)
In our endeavor to transform leadership in Africa in the 21st Century, Strathmore University Business School (SBS) has taken the responsibility of influencing the leadership of public and private sectors in the continent. This we believe is our overarching mission at SBS; Service to Society through the development of international executive business management and leadership programmes.
Since its inception in 2005, and coming at a time when the world and Africa face extraordinary challenges, SBS’s mission to develop transformative business leaders is even more relevant. By the use of globally tried and tested teaching methodology using case studies, using both local and international faculty, while at the same time partnering with local industry experts who draw and localize the experiences on the ground, we ensure that our programmes foster a culture of continuous learning.
SBS is the main implementer of the Sisters Blended Value Project. The project will be implemented in four countries; Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, and Zambia and will work with various Catholic sisters’ congregations from the Association of Consecrated Women in Eastern and Central Africa (ACWECA), to offer appropriate training, coaching, and mentoring, and opportunity to conduct research aimed at developing and bridging identified gaps in social entrepreneurship and leadership capacities of sisters as social entrepreneurship leaders.