The PEF Story
In 2001, the Caucus of Development NGO Networks (CODE-NGO), in its quest to eradicate poverty in the Philippines, founded Peace Equity Access for Community Empowerment Foundation Inc, or Peace and Equity Foundation (PEF) through a donation of Php 1.34 billion from the sale of Poverty Eradication and Alleviation Certificates (PEACe Bonds).
Guided by its social development approach, PEF in its early years supported projects all over the country: basic services, community organizing, advocacy, microfinance, environmental protection, and agrarian reform communities.
To ensure greater reach to the poor communities, PEF established Partnerships and Access Centers (PACs) in different parts of the country. Guided by poverty maps created in partnership with local government units, PEF was able to bring opened opportunities with different local actors to make a difference in their respective communities.
In its first 10 years, PEF was able to support programs and projects worth Php 1.2 billion, partnering with 1,200 organizations to 320,000 households in the process.
The review of hundreds of PEF projects in its first ten years showed that poor households could get out of poverty if they are a part of an enterprises. In the third 2011-2015 strategic direction of PEF, it was decided that the focus will be shifted in supporting social enterprises (SEs). It will be the vehicle for inclusive growth and rural economic expansion that PEF sought to create.
PEF first invested in ten social enterprises (“unang taya’) as pilot projects for its SE Strategy. Four of the projects aim to benefit at least 6,000 households in agrarian reform and indigenous communities.
Three are “climate change-smart” projects demonstrating the SE approach to promote and protect the environment. To accelerate the growth of enterprises and achieve sustainability through responsible investments, Peace and Equity Holdings was then formed in 2013.
In 2016, PEF sought to strengthen the work it has started since 2011 through a scaling–up approach. PEF supported SEs in C5 commodities – cacao, coconut, coffee, cane sugar, and climate-smart crops. As PEF continues to refine its strategies, focus were provided in seven priority areas where these commodities are thriving.
As of 2020, SE investments have totaled Php 1.33 billion that engaged more than 195,000 households. Seven hundred thirty-six (736) projects on agricultural enterprises and basic social services were supported.
As PEF celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, it will remain committed to its goal: Prosperity for Every Family.