Corporate partnerships

Connecting People

Evolving political, economic and social dynamics call for new styles of alliance building between the private sector and non-profit organisations. Much can be accomplished for our societies and communities when corporations and the Civil Society combine forces. However, choice of partner (the ‘who'), articulated objectives (the ‘why') and mode of operation (the ‘how') are all key success factors for any sustainable partnership agreement.

Partnership can only be successful when both sides have common ground even though the motives can be different. If your own organisation shares the vision of "a society in which all citizens are equally able to achieve their rights, and fulfill their responsibilities", we have a common ground! To choose the right partner is not straightforward, neither for you nor for ACORD. The choice of a partner is mainly based on trust and respect. Trust is generally built over time through involvement in shared activities and projects. Prospective partners often do not have the benefit of a long-standing relationship. That's why it is worth looking at establishing trust through other means.

At the outset, we should together analyse the mandates of our organisations, the reputation we have built in the communities we are working with, the quality of our other partnerships through independent referees. This is because it may be important to determine whether any feelings of distrust stem from general scepticism or lack of common understanding towards the "other sector". It is possible that hesitation may also stem from more specific concerns.

ACORD is aware that although more and more NGOs and corporations have made the choice to partner as they share a common vision of their social role; this is still a relatively new trend that can raise questions and apprehension on both sides.
We as an organisation, are ready to face this together with you to lay out the basics for a legitimate and trustful partnership, and to provide all relevant information that could help building a strong relationship.

You and Us

While maintaining high confidentiality, operational procedures or policies developed determine clear guidelines on external communication and publicity.  ACORD, in its work, lays strong emphasis on the importance of communication for successful partnerships to emerge.
By recognizing the unique differences between non-governmental organisations and the private sector, especially in terms of approach, articulation and appraisal, ACORD strives to "walk in step" with a view to build confidence during implementation.
The following main ideas for supporting ACORD are essential to achieve the vision your organisation and ours have in common; along the way, other partnership developments will be considered to increase the efficiency of the programme and evaluate the quantitative and qualitative impact of this collaboration for the most marginalised and for society as a whole.

How you can make the difference?

Financial resources
Let's not be afraid to talk about money: securing financial resources is vital for ACORD to achieve its mission and to create a real impact on positive change mechanisms in Africa. Of the funds we receive from our partners more than 89% on average is allocated directly to programmes in the field, while the rest covers administrative and global communication costs. ACORD also seeks to raise earmarked funds for its institutional development, aimed at enabling the organization pursue its mission for the most marginalized in the most effective and sustainable manner.

What funds do we need?
It is maybe unusual to pose this question, but let's make a point here; having followed a rather narrow project based approach for more than 25 years, ACORD has come to acknowledge the greater efficiency of programmatic approaches, working through multi-year country strategies, as well as at a regional and Pan-African level to significantly make a difference in terms of positive change for the communities. We therefore strongly encourage our partners to support us more flexibly through our multi-year strategic programmes.
ACORD is seeking for strong, strategic and sustainable partnerships because we believe that a positive change process takes more than months, and therefore benefits from a multi-annual perspective. Funds supporting our institutional capacity are highly appreciated because it will help ensure a high quality delivery of our programmes and will support the sustainable impact of our work. Your organisation even though primarily profit oriented, has an important role to play as a key stakeholder for improving social justice.
ACORD believes that corporate social responsibilities is not a marketing tool used by corporations to eventually make more profit but a real movement responding to a desire of making sense to business and to work in harmony with the environment as well as compensate a failure of some governments to ensure social justice and development in the poorest countries.

Profile
Over the last three decades, ACORD has focused its energies and resources into thinking, developing, testing and implementing programmes in Sub-Saharan Africa. The majority of these investments have been dedicated to projects and activities. It is now time to consider profiling the organisation as a key element to advocate for the most marginalised as well as getting more people on board to support the achieviement of our mission.In a world where there is a plethora of NGOs and communication is happening with increased speed and through new technologies, the society expects NGOs to provide regular and detailed accountability information. Your organisation can help ACORD through:
                       • Co-branding communication
                       • Offering promotional space
                       • Online promotion of ACORD's work
                       • Funding public relations events
                       • Opening your networks and recommending ACORD to your contacts

Leverage
Working with you and building a strong partnership based on mutual trust may be a way to secure additional funding to achieve our mission. Indeed your organisation is connected to many others and as an advocate you can do a lot to support us. We are convinced that you will find that it is worth it and we would like to challenge you to give it a try and measure the impact!

Goods and Services
ACORD could make use of a range of different goods and services (incl. vehicles, vaccines, financial skills, communication skills, construction material, computers, offices...) You can also donate to ACORD the income (or a percentage of it) of any goods or services you plan to sell. (In the UK this can also be done through E-bay.)

Technical know - how
Aside from funding, ACORD could benefit from learning from your fields of expertise that it still has limited capacities in internally, such as marketing or new IT development.

Advocacy
Together we can join our forces to lobby or advocate for certain legislative or policy reforms as well as increasing the level of awareness of the mass public on issues in Africa and how to address them, such as our advocacy Pan-Africa programme on Food Sovereignty. Another issue could be to advocate for tax benefits for corporate and individual donations to NGOs in African countries. This will give us a stronger voice with the Governments we're dealing with on these issues.

To start a corporate partnership with ACORD, please contact ACORD's Team:
Telephone: +254 20 272 11 72/85/86
E-mail: communications@acordinternational.org

13,000 raised!

Urge Kenya is the most spectacular international Super D sport event supporting a human cause. The ride was organised in Mount Kenya in February 2009 and ACORD had been recommended by Urge Kenya's existing partners in Africa. International Media campaigns promoted the event and ACORD's work. The 10 riders managed to fundraise 13,000€ for ACORD. On behalf of ACORD team thank you guys!

Common ground

Successful partnerships imply high levels of trust linked to respect - both for individuals as well as the
organisations that they represent. In this regard, try putting yourself in ACORD's
shoes and let ACORD, for a moment, look at the world from your window. Common views could suggest open
possibilities for joint activities. It is good to keep in mind that between ACORD, driven by social profit, and your corporation, driven by financial profit,
we might need to do some initial adjustments that an established common
language will support. Yet, we believe our motives are not too disparate as
they have in common a better society, with one focusing on social justice and the other on better standards of living for its clients.

Partnership policy

Corporations have a global influence on poor people and their communities. ACORD engages with corporations and institutions as part of its people centred community development work. In doing so, it strives to ensure that its work, integrity, reputation and image are protected and enhanced. ACORD does not work in partnership with any corporation whose primary product is the manufacture of weapons, armaments, tobacco or alcohol. Any company with whom ACORD intends to enter into a corporate partnership must demonstrate a commitment to corporate social responsibility and have an affinity with ACORD`s mission and core values. ACORD does not accept support from companies whose practices include the following:
- activities that demonstrate a disregard for Human Rights
- facing legal action for violation of international humanitarian, financial or environmental standards
- lack of transparency about its activities in sectors or regions where contraventions of international standards frequently occur