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The Environmental Foundation of Jamaica. 13 years old Board of 9 5 Standing Committees : HR and Compliance, Finance and General Purposes, Grant Management, Membership and Executive 20 staff members – main departments : Finance, - Programme, HR and Admin, & Executive Office

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The Environmental Foundation of Jamaica

  • 13 years old

  • Board of 9

  • 5 Standing Committees : HR and Compliance, Finance and General Purposes, Grant Management, Membership and Executive

  • 20 staff members – main departments : Finance, - Programme, HR and Admin, & Executive Office

  • 42 member groups (environment and child sector organizations and educational institutions


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EFJ’s Grant Making

  • Since 1993, 931 grants approved for a total of J$1,702,020,000B (USD $20M)

  • Two Calls for Proposals (The Call) sent out each year on selected themes in the child development and survival (40% funds) and the environment (60%)

  • Discretionary grants, of up to J200,000 (approx USD3000) introduced 2005/2006 as a small responsive grants programme outside of the Call process

  • Project approval by Board based on recommendations of the Grant Management Committee


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Evaluating Our Grant MakingLessons Learned

  • Call process brings strong degree of transparency, and process accountability

  • Use of Due Diligence tool in process promotes fairness

  • Many successful projects yet impact more at the local level than nationally – linked with national priorities

  • Capacity building component of the EFJ’s work has been successfully applied and should be focused and possibly increased

  • Monitoring and evaluation mechanisms can be improved and linked to baseline indicators and targets


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The Road Ahead

  • Capital Campaign – negotiating second generation funds and identifying new sources of funds

  • Leveraging other grants on behalf of members and grantees through EFJ’s influence and through funding partnerships

  • Identifying other sources of funds that grantees and members may want to access

  • Re-looking components of the investment portfolio in order to improve investment earnings

  • Keeping administrative expenses controlled


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Investing for Sustainability

  • EFJ has invested funds through fund managers in commercial banks and investment houses over 13 years

  • Investment instruments have been largely safe, high interest rate government papers

  • As a result, fund has essentially more than doubled from original total expected to be about USD20M over 18-19 years

  • A staff member monitors the investments weekly even though all instruments are held by external bodies


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Diversifying Investments

  • The EFJ as part of its sustainability plan identified and engaged in several partners to increase its corpus

  • “Go Green” facility with a commercial bank – small and medium sized enterprises access loans for enviro-retrofitting the bank handles the loan portfolio interest shared by bank and EFJ.


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Diversifying Investments 2

  • Investment in Jamaican company with an international brand name product – company arose out of a community based agro-processing industry - Walkerswood Partners Limited - selling Jamaican sauces, spices, etc.

  • EFJ invested in and has preference shares in the company and the agreement is to collect dividends on an annual basis based on loan repayments at a very competitive rate


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Diversifying Investments 3

  • The EFJ has also allocated some of its funds to the seeding of an endowment – funds from the “Go Green “ Facility and the Walkerswood Investments will be flowed into the Endowment fund

  • In addition the EFJ is negotiating a second debt for nature swap and meeting with international foundations to attract funds to the region with the EFJ as fund manager


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EFJ as Fund managers

  • Currently the EFJ is developing its skills as fund managers for other projects.

  • Two partnerships currently operate within this context : administrative and programme partnership with the Bernard van Leer Foundation (Child Development) and one with the TFCA and Nature Conservancy Forest Conservation Fund.


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Co-Financing

  • The EFJ is embarking on several co-financing arrangements in order to leverage resources to its grantees

  • Projects have been co-financed with the Jamaica Social Investment Fund

  • Agreements are being finalized with the GEF-Small Grants Programme and with the Commonwealth Foundation (England)

  • NGO Strengthening projects have taken place with IDB - Jamaica


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Important Lessons

  • All arrangements must be formalized through written, legally vetted agreements with party

  • Investments and arrangements should err on the conservative side to minimize risks

  • Reports must be made on schedule so that at all times the Foundation has knowledge of the status of the investment

  • Start early the process of investment

  • Have a diversified investment portfolio


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