Spark MicroGrants

Spark MicroGrants

Careers at Spark MicroGrants

Spark MicroGrants believes in a world where everyone lives with dignity and determines their own positive future. Decades of prescriptive aid have sidelined the poor from the very programs meant to uplift them. For nearly a decade, Spark MicroGrants has been pioneering a new approach to international aid. We believe in local solutions and catalyzing rural villages facing poverty into action. After years of refining a community organizing and seed funding model for rural village action we are garnering demand from emerging nations and leading civil society organizations to train and support them to adapt and deploy the approach at scale.

At the heart of Spark’s model, the Facilitated Collective Action Process (FCAP), are ‘town-hall’ style weekly meetings, in which women and men, young and old, plan together for their community’s future. Each village democratically elects a leadership committee, establishes a village savings account, and launches a project of their choice. Members receive weekly trainings on financial management and transparency, leadership, village planning, and advocacy. Each village then receives US$8,000 in seed funds to turn project ideas into reality and receives an additional two years of management support.

In our first decade we reached 320+ villages who have collectively launched more than 300 local impact projects, benefiting over 230,000 lives. In the next three years, we seek to accelerate the growth of this approach, through establishing a national program to reach 12,000 villages in Rwanda, lead cutting edge research on the benefits of facilitation and curate a global community of practice for organizations across the continent and beyond actively using the FCAP.

Our team of 50+ people is spread across 4 countries in East Africa and the US, sharing a common vision and value system: Facilitation

is at the core of everything we do: from supporting our communities to take their own decisions to working with our partners to adapt the model to their context to leading internal discussions. We are authentic - what we do is what we say and what we say is what we mean. We believe in being process-centered and that the how of what we do is just as important as the what. Our team is dynamic in seeking opportunities - from testing our model with a partner in a new country to taking it to national scale with a government - and we are not afraid to take risks. And above all we are community-driven: putting our communities’ needs at the forefront of all our work.

Stats we are proud of

  • 71%

    Communities Launch Independent Projects

  • 85%

    Continued meeting independently post Spark

  • 86%

    Projects are still sustaining 1 year post Spark

  • 86%

    Project sustainability

Behind the scenes