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Making sure your donation has an impact

Making sure your donation has an impact

By Revonia Kahivere

CSI Manager of the FirstRand Namibia Foundation.

Over the past decade and even before that, sponsorships, donations and corporate social investment initiatives have undergone dramatic changes and this philanthropy landscape keeps on changing.

Today, more than ever, CSI managers and donors identify with a wide range of social problems and understand the importance of solving and prioritising strategic programmes; with the aim of creating large scale quantifiable social impact.

Transparency, governance, and measurement tools are important to ensure that projects are successful and have the potential of becoming self-sustainable.

The same should also be taken into consideration when individuals support a charity, for example via the FNB Happiness Store. As the FirstRand Namibia Foundation Trust, we take decisions based on the charities’ track record with regard to mission statement and linked accomplishments, transparency, registration with the correct institutions, accountability and the possibility of a measurable impact.

FirstRand Namibia’s ‘111 Random Acts of Kindness’ was introduced in commemoration of the group’s 111 years of existence in Namibia. Through this fantastic initiative N$111 was allocated to every FirstRand Namibia employee to enable them to warm the heart of a Namibian. Through this initiative, branches and departments are encouraged to identify welfare organisations of their choice. We are proud of our FirstRand Namibia family who have thus far shown a corporate culture of caring and responsibility and we look forward to the many random acts of kindness that are to follow.

The complexity of philanthropy is that there are many deserving causes, and this makes the decision of support a difficult one. To navigate this process, the givers must establish their own ‘Giving strategy’. For your gratuitous giving to have a quantifiable and social impact, donors must be able to invest their time in ongoing research and know what, how, and who they want their donation to go to as well as determine the outcome they want to see.

Once the initial research is complete, you will be able to set out your ‘Giving strategy’ and select a non – profit organisation.

Follow these guidelines to make sure your donation has impact:

Compare mission statements: list the non-profits that fit your predetermined criteria and focus on organisations whose objectives resemble or complement your values. All non-profits have founding documents that set out the objectives of the organisation. This information should be listed on their websites or social media platforms.

Make sure organisations are registered: there are various forms of registration for non-profit organisations in Namibia. Make sure your charity belongs to one of them.

Transparency and accountability is key to knowing that your donation will be used for what it is intended. The organisation’s website or social media pages should provide information that include a list of board members and organisational leadership and staff. It should have details of their programmes and their annual reports, including financial reports. This will allow you to track how funds are spent. It will demonstrate if there is some level of controls in place.

Measurable Impact is crucial to understanding the impact of the organisation’s goals and achievements. A reputable organisation will give details of the reach and impact of their programmes and clearly describe their measurable goals, and use concrete criteria to describe its achievements, to support its impact claims.

It should be of serious concern if the organisations that are calling for donations fail to disclose any of the above information. This is why in-depth knowledge, effort and time should be used to illustrate comprehensive research and due diligence to identify the right partner or cause.


About The Author

Guest Contributor

A Guest Contributor is any of a number of experts who contribute articles and columns under their own respective names. They are regarded as authorities in their disciplines, and their work is usually published with limited editing only. They may also contribute to other publications. - Ed.

Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia

Promotion

20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.