Founded: 2007

Sector: Social Enterprise

Location: Manica Province Mozambique

Website: http://www.micaia.org/

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MICAIA is a family of charitable and social enterprise organisations operating in the UK and Mozambique. MICAIA's aim is to promote "local prosperity in a sustainable world"

MICAIA UK

MICAIA UK is a registered British charity working in Mozambique. It aims to create local prosperity in a sustainable world. MICAIA works closely with its sister organisation the MICAIA Foundation in pursuing the priorities laid out in the MICAIA Manifesto. It also works with other organisations in Mozambique and more widely that share its commitment to helping people achieve their vision of a prosperous community. MICAIA UK uses the experience of MICAIA's work in Mozambique to inform policy debates in the UK and Europe, and help reform trade policies in favour of sustainable trade. MICAIA UK is active in four principal areas:

Research

MICAIA UK is developing a research programme that will feed into programme development in Mozambique. Priorities for research include food policy and natural product development. MICAIA is developing relations with universities in the UK and more widely in order to recruit graduate students and others to lead on research under MICAIA's programme and policy framework.

Informing policy debates

An essential element of MICAIA's work is to use learning generated from programme work in Mozambique to inform policy debates in the UK, Europe and elsewhere. MICAIA UK is working to access policy processes such as parliamentary committees, where it is seeking to present evidence from Mozambique. Specific areas of concern for MICAIA UK are agro-fuels, organic and natural product certification, and carbon offsets. All of these impact significantly on Mozambique and thus represent possible points of entry to UK and EU policy debates and processes. More generally, MICAIA UK provides policy updates to inform MICAIA's work in Mozambique.

Direct programme support in Mozambique

MICAIA UK has a representative in Mozambique, and from time to time recruits researchers and specialist volunteers who contribute to the work of its sister organization the MICAIA Foundation.

Fundraising and marketing

MICAIA UK, from its base in Europe, leads the fundraising effort of the MICAIA family. This fundraising is informed by a philosophy that places raising money alongside building understanding and commitment. It is viewed that despite their monetary poverty, Mozambican people are proud, dignified and determined. Therefore more than money they need solidarity and support.

Eco-MICAIA

Eco-MICAIA is the social enterprise member of the MICAIA Family. Eco-MICAIA aims to use commercial means to achieve financial and social ends. It is a registered company in Mozambique and was established in 2007. As an organisation it is committed to MICAIA's wider mission of working to ensure "all people in Mozambique prosper within diverse and sustainable local economies and vibrant communities". Eco-MICAIA's role within the MICAIA family is to help communities and local people gain better access to local markets and to secure a stake in owning and managing successful enterprises. It also provides mission-related services to funders, investors, NGOs and communities. Any net profits made by Eco-MICAIA are used to help sustain the MICAIA Foundation's core programmes. Eco-MICAIA aims to show that community economic development does not have to be about small-scale 'income generating projects'. Instead it can be about serious investment in viable businesses with potential to grow and to create lasting opportunities for local people. Eco-MICAIA's founding Directors are Milagre Nuvunga and Andrew Kingman.

The aim of the MICAIA family of organisations is to maximize opportunities for community equity and impact on livelihoods, this aim is informed by a belief that this will be best achieved by involving community producers in market-oriented enterprises. MICAIA aims to bring market intelligence and a commitment to building a sustainable enterprise, going beyond the small scale "income generating project" model so prevalent across Africa. Eco-MICAIA is developing this approach in the following sectors.

Eco-Tourism

Eco-MICAIA is working with communities in Mozambique's Manica Province to develop joint ventures in which the community has an active role and real equity.

The first of these developments the Ndzou Camp in Moribane Forest opened in 2009/10. The second Binga Camp development at the base of Mount Binga will open early 2012. These camps are being marketed by Mozambique Eco Tours, a wholly owned subsidiary brand of Eco-MICAIA Ltd. Mozambique Eco Tours is the marketing platform not only for the Ndzou and Binga Camps but for the wider communities and enterprises MICAIA is working with.

Ndzou Camp

Ndzou Camp is in the heart of the Moribane Forest Reserve, part of the Chimanimani Conservation Area buffer zone in Sussundenga District. Ndzou means 'elephant' in the local language and one of its key attractions are walking safaris to view forest elephants. Ndzou Camp is an "eco-camp" run on solar energy with local building materials used in its construction. Education and learning are important parts of the camp's ethos and activities. It aims to be 'eco-learning centre' enabling visitors to gain a deeper understanding of the Moribane Forest ecosystem. To this end themed forest walks are available for guests, there is a herbarium, along with practical conservation initiatives and display panels charting changes in the forest over time. Ndzou Camp is a joint venture between Eco-MICAIA Ltd and the Associação Kubatana Moribane. A portion of the initial investment for the Ndzou Camp came from the World Bank as part of its Transfrontier Conservation Area programme that includes Chimanimani. Ndzou Camp is the first joint venture of its kind in Mozambique.

Binga Camp

The Binga Camp will open in 2012. The Binga Camp is at the base of Mt Binga Mozambique's highest mountain. The camp has been built in partnership with the people of Nhyabawa community. The community association will receive 20% of the bed fees paid by visitors. The Camp will create local employment opportunities, especially for guides, and will work with the community to develop linked enterprises including food, arts and crafts. An activity centre with kayaking, climbing, orienteering, horse riding etc is also planned aimed particularly at young people and families. This Centre will be a joint venture with the Nhyabawa Community Association.

Food products and agricultural markets

Eco-MICAIA Ltd is working with farmer groups to improve marketing of fresh agricultural produce and to develop a joint venture food processing businesses. The first large scale example of such partnerships is the Mozambique Honey Company.

The Mozambique Honey Company

The Mozambique Honey Company was established in 2010 through a tripartite arrangement involving V&M Grain Co, the Honey Producers Cooperative and Eco-MICAIA. The Mozambique Honey Company produces high quality organic honey using fair trade practices which it also makes available in single unit packages to customers "at the base of the pyramid". At present the majority of its business is domestic however it has plans to expand its sales across Southern Africa and globally.

In this company the Honey Producers Cooperative owns over a third of shares, with roughly another third owned by Andre Vank of V&M Grain as a private sector partner. Eco-MICAIA also retains a smaller shareholding in the company and some shares are now owned by other private sector investors. Through the Honey Producers Cooperative's shareholding in the company as many as 5000 small scale beekeepers through their representatives play a role in the running of the company. As the business develops and makes a profit dividends will be distributed to the Honey Producers Cooperative with this money then invested for a social purpose in community development activities.

As part of its role within the Mozambique Honey Company Eco-MICAIA is working to build the capacity of producers and helping develop the capacity of their representatives to play a more active role in company governance. It is also assisting in the introduction of low cost locally made bamboo and clay hives that will dramatically reduce the negative environmental impact of traditional bark hives. With its partners, Eco-MICAIA is also holding courses on beekeeping, hive management and proper harvesting in communities across the Manica and Sofala Provinces.

Consulting services

Eco-MICAIA Ltd offers consulting services in the following areas:

  • Research and strategy development in a variety of sectors
  • Feasibility studies
  • Programme evaluations
  • Organizational development of community organizations and NGOs
  • Building skills for effective grant making
  • Community based enterprise development
  • Community tourism design and planning
  • Land use planning
  • Environmental impact analysis

MICAIA Foundation

The MICAIA Foundation is a non-profit organization registered in Mozambique with statutes approved by the Council of Ministers of Mozambique. The Foundation works primarily in the Manica and Maputo provinces of Mozambique. The Foundation has a board of thirteen who represent specialist areas of knowledge including forestry, enterprise development, rural finance, and agriculture. The MICAIA Foundation's programmes follow the priorities laid out in the MICAIA Manifesto under three core themes:

  • Strengthening local economies
  • Working with people to build healthy, vibrant communities
  • Building consensus for social and economic change

In addition to the core programmes of MICAIA Foundation, MICAIA is developing a set of specifically youth-focused programmes that will help younger people take up new opportunities.

Contact Details

PO Box 1603

Maputo

Mozambique

Tel. +258 823034285

Website: http://www.micaia.org/

andrew@micaia.com