What we do

HIH SA pursues the creation of jobs and micro enterprises that promote self reliance at individual, household and community level. This in turn contributes to economic growth at local levels. Over the years HIH has developed a Enterprise Development model which is premised on the need to create sustainable income generating activities. The model provides for unlocking access to funding and enhancing market linkages for a comprehensive job creation model.

Our model focuses on:

  1. Social mobilization: Supporting the formation of Self Help groups, particularly among marginalized and poor communities, training them on financial literacy and savings.
  2. Capacity building/Training: We have an accredited Enterprise Development training programme which focuses on all steps to business development.
  3. Access to finance: facilitating access to finance either via internal lending within the SHG or through partners.
  4. Value addition & market linkage: Offering additional support to our beneficiaries to help grow their enterprises. This can involve specific skills livelihood training, or assisting with accessing markets.

Our track record…creating jobs to fight poverty

Hand in Hand has been active in South Africa since 2005 when it assisted the government in establishing its “Jobs for growth” programme. Since then, the organization has evolved into a direct service provider, creating and developing SHGs, income generating projects and enterprises. Southern Africa (HiH SA) now operates in 4 countries namely South Africa, Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Lesotho.At the end of 2013, HIH SA was working with over 90,000 women in 18016 SHGs. Through these SHGs, HIH has helped to create over 17312 enterprises, as well as assisting members with their own formal businesses. Having taken time to establish a strong working model, HIH SA has ambitious expansion plans to other Southern African countries and facilitate the creation of more micro enterprises with more job opportunities.

Livelihoods and self-reliance project in Gauteng

UNHCR has entered into a partnership agreement with Hand In Hand Southern Africa (HIH) to implement the Livelihoods and Self Reliance Project for the Refugees in South Africa. The project is being implemented in Johannesburg and Pretoria from May 2017 to 31st December 2017. The Livelihood project will support refugees with Advocacy and lobbying, Self-employment support, Employment support including interventions to promote social cohesion in target communities.


Any person interested in participating in the project must meet the following criteria:

  • Must have a valid Section 24 Refugee Permit and/or RSA ID issued by the Department of Home Affairs
  • Must be between 18 years and 45 years of age
  • Must be residing in Johannesburg or Pretoria for the duration of the project
  • Must not have been supported by UNHCR under the previous livelihoods projects
  • Must demonstrate commitment to fully participate in the project activities during the project implementation period
  • Persons with Asylum seeker permits or permanent residence permits do not qualify
  • For self-employment support, candidates must have been operating a business for a period of at least a year