Jacqueline Novogratz is founder and CEO of Acumen Fund and author of The Blue Sweater, an inspiring memoir about a quest to understand global poverty and a determination to find ways to conquer it. In case you don’t much about her work, read her guest post, Building Value in the Developing World, over at Fortune’s Postcards.
Here’s an excerpt of her story:
Over the past two-plus decades, I’ve committed my life to understanding global connectedness and issues of poverty. In 2001, after working for more than seven years for the Rockefeller Foundation, I founded Acumen Fund, a nonprofit venture capital fund that invests in the poor. We don’t believe in traditional aid. We hold the recipients of our loans and equity stakes accountable to clear goals.
We’ve funded A To Z, a company in Tanzania that today produces more than 20 million anti-malarial bed nets annually and employs over 7,000 people, mostly women. We’ve invested in Mumbai’s first emergency ambulance service that serves rich and poor alike (and whose yellow ambulances were ubiquitous in the news coverage of last November’s attacks in that city). We’ve supported the development and distribution of drip irrigation systems that allow hundreds of thousands of poor farmers in India and Pakistan to double or even triple their crop yields and income. We’ve invested more than $40 million in enterprises that have brought safe water, affordable health care, housing, and alternative energy to low-income people in South Asia and East Africa.
Posted by: Laurel Delaney