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New Initiative Could Help Thousands of Poor Farmers

clinton global initiative

Smallholder farmers in Africa, Latin America, South Asia, and the Caribbean will soon benefit from a huge initiative to help poor rural communities. The Enhanced Livelihoods Investment Initiative (ELII) is a Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action that will improve the livelihoods of as many as 300,000 smallholder farmers and their communities.

Earlier this month, Unilever announced: “President Bill Clinton and Frank Giustra, Co-Founders of the Clinton Giustra Enterprise Partnership, Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever, Jacqueline Novogratz, Founder and CEO of Acumen, announced the collaboration on a panel at the Clinton Global Initiative’s 2015 Winter Meeting in New York City,” of the collaborative effort to support small farmers in impoverished regions around the world. The overall mission of this initiative is to catalyze economic growth in low-income communities.

“I’m excited about this partnership between the Clinton Guistra Enterprise Partnership, Acumen, and Unilever, which will improve the lives of smallholder farmers by bringing them into global markets and distribution networks, empowering hundreds of thousands of people to expand their skills and lift themselves from poverty,” former President Bill Clinton commented. Clinton and the other philanthropic collaborators that are part of the ELII are hopeful that empowering smallholder farmers in developing areas will in turn allow them to support the communities they are a part of.

“We believe that in the long term, successful businesses can only be sustainable ones,” said Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever. He also explains that “This partnership has the potential to dramatically increase the scale of what we can do to support smallholder farmers, empower women across our supply chains and in turn help build sustainable, viable businesses that alleviate poverty,” of the goals set forth by the ELII.

If the ELII proves to be successful, hundreds of thousands of farmers and their communities will soon be equipped with the tools necessary to overcome poverty. This philanthropic effort is one that involves a large level of commitment from the Clinton Global Initiative, and could pave the way for similar initiatives if successful.

Learn more about how the ELII will be carried out by reading this press release from Unilever.