The Willowton Group in partnership with Al Baraka Bank and other caring, supporting and patriotic South Africans have conceived the idea of establishing the Giving for Hope Foundation to assist local Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) during these difficult times that lie ahead.
The impact of Covid 19 on the developed economies has been huge and as it spreads to emerging markets like South Africa, its impact on our already fragile economy has been amplified. The three-week general lockdown except for essential services and industries, has seen multiple large enterprises seeking protection from bankruptcy. As the Covid 19 virus has a ripple effect on the economy the biggest impact will be felt by SMMEs, many of these family owned businesses and sole proprietorships, form the largest employers in our economy. Unlike larger enterprises, that have easier access to capital, many SMMEs will struggle to stay afloat post Covid 19.
The Foundation launched with R100 million and calls on businesses across the country to loan money to the Giving for Hope Foundation with the aim of raising R500 million. The Foundation will provide SMMEs interest, profit and admin-cost free loans for two years, with repayments commencing after the first year, in 12 monthly instalments. One of the main reasons for the establishment of the Foundation is job preservation, and there is a direct link between the quantum of loans and the number of employees employed by businesses assisted.
The fund is administered by Al Baraka Bank. All lending is fully Shariah-compliant and meets FICA and other banking regulations.
Our duty as large business extends beyond generating shareholder wealth and as socially responsible South Africans, we need to be active in ensuring that real transformation takes place in our beautiful country. Whilst the founders are active in social upliftment, sports development and educational activities amongst others, we believe that we can make meaningful change within our fragile economy by assisting SMMEs during these dark hours.
From the founders of the Giving For Hope Foundation.