HR&S has established HR&S Research, Innovation and Social Enterprising (RISE) Support Centres in  Sub-Sahara African countries.

The Centres provide support to local social entrepreneurs, researchers and innovators in order to empower their offer of products and services.

Each Centre has its own set-up, depending on the local needs and context.


  • Burkina Faso, Ouagadougou
  • Kenya, Nairobi
  • Liberia, Monrovia
  • Nigeria, Abuja
  • Togo, Lomé
  • Rwanda, Kigali
  • Uganda, Kampala 
  • Zambia, Lusaka
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to Programme Management Partner RISE members

Based on capital raised through ActionInvest.

  • Ten percent annual interest.
  • Six  months loans are paid back with 7% (thus 14% annual interest).
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It is crucial that the RISE members has balance in their businesses. The ActionInvest capital shall not decrease as a result of members failing to pay back. As donations are collected, the capital on the Branch bank account shall always mirror the amount transferred through ActionInvest.


RISE members provide a guarantee for the re-payment of a loan. The guarantee stands in proportion to the business and the RISE member abilities. 

Collateral. We  invest in businesses that can provide assurance of repayment through provision of collateral and we have an independent adjudicator whose role is to take care of collateral.

Guarantors. As we also reach out to under-served communities with maybe limited opportunities to provide collateral we install accountability systems through for example guarantors. We may request two guarantors with secured salaries, such as employees at government institutions.

New loan request by RISE member

The RISE member provides a written request to the HR&S Branch accountant for new loans. The withdrawal request states the purpose for the loan, which programme it refers to and which agreement(s) it is supported by. The request compiles all the costs it shall cover together with a statement presenting how the loan will be paid back and when. 
Within two months after the date of the loan transfer, receipts for all costs are compiled by the RISE-member and shared with the HR&S country branch.

Empowerment meetings


Offered as physical meetings within each RISE Centre and are arranged by the local by country branch’s team. RISEtalks takes place six times per year.

The meeting addresses training, knowledge-sharing and support between RISE members, discussion on the capital available for loans and the distribution of the capital between the members. Pay-pack periods to ensure funds are available for all members for the follow-up loans as well as generating the income from the interest to cover the running costs of the Centre. The training includes; accounting, long-term evaluation planing, impact assessment surveys, and business management.
RISE members are obliged to attend RISEtalks.


ActionTalks occurs monthly and is an opportunity for RISE members to pitch their business ideas. It can be new RISE members or those who argues for scaling up.

The events are arranged as webinars and invites all RISE members in all countries, the local branches teams in all countries, HR&S Sweden team and Action10 volunteer staff. Sometimes other supporters are invited as well.

It is crucial to try to arrange with good internet connection for zoom events.

training events

ROPE webinars

Training on the HR&S management strategy “Real-time Outcome Planning & Evaluation” (ROPE). The training is given as webinars through zoom by HR&S Sweden.

We offer training events twice a year; one targeting researchers and technicians and one targeting social entrepreneurs and sustainable developers.

Thematic training

We offer thematic training by HR&S Expert Advisers.

  • Bi-annual events within the Research management programme, targeting
    • research grant applications and
    • manuscript writing.


  • The HR&S training events  is free of charge for our RISE members.
  • Non-members are also invited who pays a fee.
    • EUR 20 for non members
      • EUR 10 for students and non-employed participants.

It is crucial to try to arrange with good internet connection for zoom events.

Accountability management

The capital

It is important that the members has balance in their businesses. The ActionInvest capital shall not decrease as a result of members failing to pay back.

Accountability procedures

  1. Effort made to expain and agree on expectations while filling in and signing the HR&S – RISE member partnership agreement.
  2. RISEtalks: Team-building and joint financial responsibility for the ActionInvest capital among RISE members.
  3. Pitching during ActionTalks.
  4. Collateral.
    • For example, signing agreements with employers that loan and interest is withdrawn directly form the salary.
  5. Accounting training.
  6. ROPE training.
  7. Auditing with management reports.
  8. RISE member direct coaching and training of their own RISE members customers, when appropriate.


  1. Potential new RISE members are pitching their business to the Country RISE Centre members. The size of the present capital is discussed and how the loans is distributed between RISE members.
  2. Potential new RISE members are ten pitching their business to Action10 in an ActionTalk. Action10 will be involved with agreeing on what business to fundraise for.
  3. RISE members can sometimes pitch the business to the private sector in HR&S/ events, seeking advice and also proposing a donation.

Bank account withdrawals

Withdrawal by RISE Member for business loan: The loan-taker provides a request to the RISE accountant when withdrawals are required.
Withdrawal from the bank account by a RISE Member/Loan-taker also requires authorisation by HR&S CEO and the signatures from both signatories. The withdrawal request states the purpose for the withdrawal, which programme it refers to and wich agreements it is supported by. Thus the request compiles all the costs it shall cover together with a statement presenting how the loan will be paid back and when. 
Within two months after the date of the withdrawal, receipts for all costs are compiled by the loan-taker and shared with HR&S CEO and both signatories.


When major procurements are to be done by RISE members, the RISE member shall request an HR&S Branch representative (team-leader and/or accountant) to join when the transaction is made.


Loan-takers provide a guarantee for the re-payment of a loan. It is still a soft loan and the guarantee stands in propotion to the business ability of the loan-taker.

Mutual understanding of expectations

Creating value rather than depending on hand-outs

  • The “help-me” narrative is not accepted.
  • Both partners have to understand and agree on the mutual expectations from the very beginning. This is entirely crucial for achieving success.
  • It is necessary to set the expectations right from the very beginning to avoid unrealistic expectations.
  • Partners in an aid prone environment (where maybe in addition corruption is social norm), must be Change Agents. The change includes that partners are not looking for handouts and agrees with that this is not sustainable, but that creating value will bring the desired prosperity.

Emergency fund

Each RISE centre has an emergency fund put aside so that they can assist where needed, and the RISE Centre fundraise for the emergency fund, it-self.

RISE members are accountable to each other

Each Centre has a certain amount of capital to pay out as loans. Within the Centre we will have full transparency between members on how loans are paid back or not. The RISE members shall preferably support each other to pay back. If someone is not paying back, less will be available for the others. We are targeting is the motivation to pay back. In case there is an external challenge, maybe drought for a farmer, then everyone will accept a loss of funds, even though everyone will suffer from lass capital.
  • RISE members must have intrinsic motivation accepting money transferred to them is a loan to be paid back.
  • The amount given out as loan will be deducted from the principal amount at source.
  • They will cross reference each other in the group, that is to say that if any member of the group default in repayment, the entire group will be held accountable.
  • If they are faithful in repayment, they will be qualified for applying for a higher loan and their businesses can expand.
  • They repay the principal on a monthly basis.

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