Did you know a company must spend 6% of payroll on skills development, and that this can be for persons not employed within the company? Or which JSE listed companies are not as yet, but now must become B-BBEE compliant? We learnt the impact of this and more at our recent networking evening and masterclass ‘B-BBEE for Fundraising’ held in October at The River Club.

As social change agents, funding is always a topic of conversation and for many of us an on-going concern. While we understand that we need a holistic, sustainable funding approach from a diversity of resources, we note that NGOs are usually most adept at doing what they do, be it developing and delivering programmes, skills training or services for social upliftment. Raising money to fund these, requires a wholly different skill-set.

This much-requested Masterclass ’B-BBEE for Fundraisers’ was an eye opener. In South Africa we have a government initiative, B-BBEE, that requires investment in transformation. Businesses compliance requirement can work in our favour, as non-profits delivering programmes which corporates can fund as part of the B-BBEE requirements.

Expert fundraiser and B-BBEE specialist Roxanne Giannikos, who has extensive experience in business development, holding key roles at various social impact organisations such as Orbis (health and medical), Siyabonga Africa (poverty alleviation, skills training and economic development) and Wessa (environment) broke down the complexities of B-BBEE, pointing out the practical benefits of the new codes.

She helped us to re-examine our own B-BBEE score-cards. Are we properly scored? As an EME (non- profit or social enterprise) are we simply compliant (level 4) or can we be a level 1 or level 2, thereby increasing our opportunity to be competitive as funding recipients? This masterclass highlighted what funds are available from which companies and from which departments. We learnt to include in our proposals a value proposition that talks to the sweet spot, connecting potential funders B-BBEE and funding strategy with the work that we as social impact agents do.  We gained clarity around evidentiary requirements and M&E structures required of both businesses and NGOs.

This session was highly motivating, and members left with a far better understanding of how B-BBEE compliance can work to assist non-profits to access funding in South Africa.