Cambodia, 28 November - 10 December 2016
In December 2016, GIFT brought leaders from Asia, Europe and Africa to Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia. They were challenged with developing a new business model to strengthen the country’s struggling rice sector which employs three million Cambodians or 20% of the population.
Working with SOMA Group, a leading local conglomerate led by GLP alumni and current President of the Cambodian Rice Federation H.E. Sok Puthyvuth, participants produced a business plan for “farmer-centric” contract farming to support increased yields, improved seed and rice quality and ensure the financial benefits are shared more equitably between agribusiness and smallholder farmers.
Following the success of its inaugural Young Leaders Programme in Hong Kong in 2015, GIFT ran the second edition of the programme in collaboration with the Hong Kong Countryside Foundation.
Twenty one young professionals and managers from business, government and civil society took part in the YLP, GIFT’s professional platform for tri-partite engagement and collaboration around some of Hong Kong’s most topical issues, i.e. land use, culture and heritage, and connections between urban and rural Hong Kong.
With the world's population expected to exceed 9.1 billion by 2050, massive strain will be put on the global food supply chain. Feeding a growing global population will require a multi-faceted approach which takes into account ecological and natural resource limits, safety and quality of produce, social challenges and rural livelihoods.
GIFT’s 47th Global Leaders Programme (GLP) included a field project in Changchun, Jilin Province, China. Twenty business executives from nine different countries took part in GIFT’s flagship two-week programme to apply their leadership skills towards a project focused on community based Natural Farming, a socially and ecologically sound alternative to large-scale industrial farming operations.
GIFT partnered with Yunfeng Farming Cooperative ("Yunfeng") and Shijie Agricultural Technology Development Co ("Shijie") who are pionners in Natural Farming in China.
Participants were tasked to develop recommendations to support the creation of a national Natural Farming Alliance, with a long term vision to revitalise the countryside while producing safe, healthy food for consumers.
Vietnam, 18 - 30 April 2016
Globally, close to 2.4 billion people lack access to adequate sanitation facilities and close to 80% of diseases in developing countries are caused by unsafe water sources. The provision of clean water and adequate sanitation is a key factor in the reduction of sickness and poverty. The UN estimates that inadequate sanitation costs the world close to US$260 billion in economic losses and that every US$1 spent on sanitation brings a US$5.5 return by keeping people healthy and productive.
GIFT’s 46th Global Leaders Programme (GLP) included a field project in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Over twenty business executives took part in GIFT’s flagship two-week programme to apply their leadership skills towards resolving a pressing social issue: improving public health through handwashing with soap.
GIFT partnered with HappyTap company, a Vietnamese social enterprise spun off from WaterSHED NGO and committed to providing market-based solutions to widespread challenges associated to poor water and sanitation. The company’s flagship product – the Labobo – is a dedicated handwashing station that is affordable, portable and easy to use. Participants were tasked to provide HappyTap with strategic recommendations to support the large-scale sale and distribution of the handwashing device in Vietnam and the region.
One major gap in India’s healthcare sector, in spite of its rapid growth, is the lack of a centralised emergency response system: there is no national emergency number, nor a national dispatch system. High traffic, poor-quality roads, stressed public hospitals and a lack of community awareness all contribute to slow response rates and delayed stabilisation and treatment. Emergency response can be poor even in places with relatively developed and high-quality healthcare sectors, such as the Indian state of Kerala.
GIFT’s 45th Global Leaders Programme included a field project in the city of Cochin. More than twenty business executives took part in GIFT’s two-week programme to apply their leadership skills towards helping to resolve a pressing social issue: improving health coverage, especially emergency coverage, in both Kerala and India.
GIFT partnered with MUrgency Global Services, Inc., a mobile platform that connects patients in emergency situations with nearby medical professionals. The goal of this programme was to help MUrgency launch its operations in Kerala and eventually nationwide. MUrgency’s founders include Shaffi Mather and Sweta Mangal, the co-founders of Ziqitza Health Care Limited, the developing world’s largest for-profit emergency ambulance company whose fleet of 1300+ ambulances has facilitated over four million emergency transportations.
For a visual overview of the programme and a comprehensive review of the field-trip, please refer to the round-up.
Myanmar, 18 – 23 October 2015
Myanmar continues to emerge from years of isolation and its financial sector is one of the least developed in the world. More than 70% of adults do not have formal access to credit, deposit and other financial services and only 5% of adults have a bank account. However, the industry is undergoing significant changes, not least in the development of private sector banking.
Yoma Bank, a subsidiary of Yoma Strategic Holdings, a GIFT partner, is in the race to becoming one of Myanmar’s leading commercial banks. Having invested heavily in human resources, infrastructure and technology since 2013, Yoma Bank now wants to enhance transparency and corporate governance with the aim of bringing its operations up to international standards.
GIFT partnered with Temasek Management Services Academy in October to co-design and facilitate the experiential learning component of their leadership programme in Myanmar. 30+ mid-level managers from various Temasek-held companies travelled to Yangon to meet local stakeholders and explore new business ideas to produce a gap analysis report to support Yoma Bank in its next stage of enterprise development.