For the past decade, the Legatum Foundation has sought to understand the impact of its grant programme. Evaluating inputs into a project is easy, measuring outcomes is more challenging.

For the past decade, the Legatum Foundation has sought to understand the impact of its grant programme. Evaluating inputs into a project is easy, measuring outcomes is more challenging. Comparative analysis across sectors and programmes is notoriously difficult, but this should not be used as an excuse for not trying. Without metrics, it remains a challenge to identify the projects that are truly performing against a range of interventions. The Legatum Foundation therefore employs a social return on investment (SROI) measure – the "Delta Score" – which helps to identify projects that are under- or over-performing and to make grant allocations accordingly. This is an iterative process which is only enhanced over time through repeated incremental innovations.

Colin Webb

Partnering for Maximum Impact

I visited one of our projects located about half an hour outside of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. We were met by a group of strong, kind-hearted ladies who belonged to a community that had been heavily affected by HIV/AIDS. The aim of this project was to establish a support network for members of the community and provide education on ways of reducing the spread of HIV/AIDS amongst the populace. Early each morning, all the women within the community would walk for hours into the hillsides to collect huge bundles of sticks, which they would carry back to the village to earn a modest income. During the day the men remained in the village to care for the children while weaving intricate scarves and garments on their old wooden looms. It was a truly humbling experience to see the strength and fortitude of these remarkable individuals who are, against all odds, living positively.

To learn more about our work in Ethiopia combating HIV/AIDS please click here.

Colin Webb is Digital Director for Legatum

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