Many Rivers’ 8th Annual Monitoring and Evaluation Report conducted by Deloitte Access Economics is now available.
We are on a 10-year journey to understand and strengthen the economic and social value we create for individuals, their families and wider communities through annual evaluation reports.
Deloitte Access Economics reports the outcomes and impacts achieved each year by drawing on quantitative and qualitative data.
“Many Rivers is supporting clients and communities to move out of structural disadvantage via a journey of growing self-belief, accountability, networks and business acumen.” Deloitte Access Economics
Microenterprise Development Program:
Many Rivers works with a diverse range of people that are traditionally underserviced. We are engaging with clients who will benefit the most from our support.
Female business owners make up 49% of our Many Rivers supported businesses which significantly exceeds the industry average of 35%. Further, 38% of our clients are Indigenous and 13% have an ethnicity from outside Australia.
Our clients often look to us for help with record keeping, business planning and tips on how to manage their business finances.
An analysis of client stories reveals that most clients were positive about their future business stability and their future goals were most commonly based around expanding their business.
Many clients are motivated by personal achievement, fulfilment, happiness and the autonomy and flexibility that is offered by owning their own business. However, they identified that the biggest change to their lifestyle since opening their own business is the increasing work demands.
In addition to providing access to financial support, clients highly valued the support and reliability of their business coaches. Through general guidance, mentoring and support, clients were provided with pastoral care and motivation. The constant presence and support offered by business coaches builds a relationship of trust between the client and Many Rivers. Clients build a sense of self-belief to overcome challenges. Clients valued the support from Many Rivers business coaches more than their business and financial knowledge and financial support.
Initially, 45% of clients are largely independent of welfare before working with Many Rivers. Over five years of business operations, this significantly increased, with the largest increase during the first year of business operations. After five years of business operations, 80% of clients are largely independent of welfare. Indigenous clients are less likely to be dependent on welfare.
The second half of FY2020 was impacted by COVID-19 with 195 businesses ceasing their operations in the 6-month period, of which 39% ceased temporarily. We continued to support these businesses and a number have resumed operations since June. In October 2020, 551 businesses are operating well compared to 242 in April 2020.
Client stories showed that Many Rivers business coaches played a role in supporting clients during the unprecedented economic and social challenges of the COVID-19 crisis.
Community Economic Development (CED) Program:
The CED Program was reported to provide a trusted and independent voice and to support the efforts of community leaders to strengthen their self-determination in addition to supporting economic development. This shows that the CED program is building results above and beyond the immediate target areas.
Deloitte has identified that land and asset ownership, community cohesion, access to markets and exposure to economic development projects are significant enablers of community progress, which will improve the CED program’s ability to support outcomes.
Here are some other key points from the CED Evaluation.
Five supported communities are in a position to report on the financial and economic outcomes. They demonstrated an increases in revenue, profit, asset and employment gains, including:
- $2.7 million gain in revenue
- $1 million gain in profit
- $10.3 million gain in assets
- $1.1 million gain in employment expenses
- 23 additional jobs were created
Find more information on our CED program and other Many Rivers programs here.
- Many Rivers supported clients and communities are generating increasing economic value and improving their economic and social outcomes.
- We support these clients and communities out of disadvantage by helping them to grow their capabilities for creating and expanding sustainable businesses.
- Microenterprise Development client stories and Community Economic Development Manager interviews demonstrate that Many Rivers’ long-term partnership approach is defined by trust, confidence and aspiration.
More information, including the full Many Rivers Evaluation report, can be found here.
Take a read of our client stories to see the impact of Many Rivers beyond the numbers.