Hivos International

Frontrunners for Social Change

Frontrunners are at the heart our strategy; progressive citizens and their organisations, enlightened governments and innovative businesses. People who operate at the frontline of developments due to their great ideas, new solutions, high impact collaborations and lots of guts. We catalyse their innovative, persistent attempts to realise social change. We support them in bringing to scale their most promising solutions. We link all parties that can, and want to be part of these solutions. We help to create an enabling political environment in which these solutions really stand a chance and can flourish.

Our three-step approach to social change:

  1. We support frontrunners and develop ideas. We engage game-changing pioneers and frontrunners that inspire others. We have a keen eye for these innovators and offer them a platform, connecting them to different networks, provide start-up funding, training etc.

  2. We connect multiple stakeholders and co-create solutions. We organise multi-actor platforms, ‘coalitions of the willing’ that are able to transform ideas into solutions and help them grow and spread. We finance programmes, ensure good monitoring and evaluations, and incorporate lessons learnt into future programming.

  3. We influence policies and scale solutions. We bring solutions to scale by influencing policies at all levels of government and by triggering media interest in alternative solutions to persistent problems. We also scale out successful solutions to other countries and regions.

Our six instruments

To support partners, pioneers and platforms, we use six instruments:

  1. Network. We have a large, diverse and global network of partners that we engage in everything we do;
  2. Innovation and knowledge. We invest in knowledge and innovation to trigger change. By staying ahead of the curve in understanding social change and crises, we make our role and programmes more effective;
  3. Programme development. We develop relevant multi-stakeholder programmes and ensure they are properly managed;
  4. Capacity development. We develop the capacity of organisations to increase their effectiveness. This ranges from enhancing basic management and administrative skills, to specialised training on international advocacy, networking and fundraising;
  5. Advocacy. We advocate for laws, regulations and markets to work in favour of marginalised groups. We support our partners in their advocacy and campaigning efforts and also directly mobilise citizens, policymakers and other relevant actors in the Netherlands, the European Union and at the United Nations;
  6. Financing. We provide grants to partners and projects and experiment with other financing mechanisms such as crowdfunding and impact investing.