Our positive partnership and shared values with IADES-Togo is the beating heart behind the success to delivering our vision to those most in need.
Since 2016, we have worked side by side with Christian Kadangah, founder and Managing Director of IADES-Togo, and his team, and not only have our beneficiaries been able to grow, but so have we.
From Deki’s beginnings as a funding partner, and IADES’ as an implementing partner, we have developed a true partnership where we continuously work together towards the same vision.
When we first met Christian in 2014, he had only just established IADES (Institution d’Aide au Developpement Economique et Social), an independent micro-finance company in the centre of Togo’s capital, Lomé.
Christian had previously been working for one of Togo’s largest micro-finance companies, but felt that it was just about money, and not about the people they were supporting. With the little savings he had, and his passion to make a difference in the world, Christian left and started his own business, IADES-Togo.
Christian soon applied to work with us as a partner, but without enough experience, or enough historical data, sadly IADES didn’t meet our criteria. We could see the potential in this partnership and forwarded the list of measures they would need to improve to be eligible to apply again, which would take them a further two years.
In 2016, Christian approached Vashti again, and this time they would be able to meet face to face as Vashti was due to fly out to visit one of our other partners in Northern Ghana.
The two founders met soon afterwards in Accra, Ghana. The conversation flowed easily despite the language barrier and they soon realised that the organisations they had both started had shared beliefs and values.
Deki and IADES-Togo were both born from the passion to help people, and it is this which has made our alignment strong from the very beginning.
We both want to have a greater impact within the communities where we work, and to create a more holistic approach.
When Deki re-evaluated our different partnerships, we realised that we were spreading ourselves too thinly.
We could also see that our partnership with IADES-Togo was our strongest relationship and the most natural alliance.
Together we look for ways to create a sustainable long-term future with a clearer understanding of the best possible outcome for beneficiaries. it is this partnership which allows us to make the greatest impact.
“For me it is clear, that for vulnerable communities to flourish, they need basic economic and social services such as access to healthcare, access to clean energy, clean water and education.
We are pleased with the work being done with our sister partner Deki which brings well-being and smiles to the rural communities”
– Christian Kadangah
Vashti founded Deki in 2008 after she was inspired to change just one girl’s life, a Tibetan refugee named Deki Dolkha.
Deki Dolkha, was aged just 4, when her parents put her on the back of a donkey cart to make the journey from Nepal to India, in the hope that she would have a better chance in life there.
Deki ended up in an orphanage founded by the Dalai Lama, and this is where Vashti’s father, Johnny Richards, met her and then sponsored her through school. Vashti often heard her father talk about Deki Dolkha, and after his death, she continued sending Deki money and eventually decided to visit her in India.
Deki Dolkha, now aged 17, was trapped in a cycle of poverty, and reliant on handouts. Vashti realised there were thousands of other women in the same position, all needing to be given an opportunity to move forwards. All Deki needed was the opportunity to work her way out of poverty.
Vashti founded the charity Deki in her name and created financial opportunities for people who were unable to access formal financial services. By increasing opportunities for entrepreneurs to access ethical microloans, they were now able to invest in their small businesses to help them grow and see profits.
Vashti believes that we can all learn from the enterprising spirit of Deki entrepreneurs. “We all have big dreams, but we don’t all have the opportunity to make them happen.”
From Deki’s early beginnings with Vashti working from her kitchen table and a small baby in her arms, Deki has now helped over 150,000 people living in poverty in West Africa.
“My wish has always been to lift women up, to give them a voice and to give them the confidence to become leaders and role models within their communities, inspiring the next generation of girls and women.”
Vashti visiting Deki entrepreneurs in 2016