Crossroads International / Green Beaver / Papillon MDC

A winning multi-sector partnership

Crossroads International is a Canadian international cooperation organization that aims to advance equality for women and girls and to eradicate poverty in some of the poorest countries in Subsaharan Africa.


Crossroads International wanted to better mobilize private enterprises in order to serve its societal mission and increase its impact. Among others, the organization supported a national union of 15,000 Senegalese women soap producers who had reached a ceiling in terms of their practices, and their sales capacities, in terms of technical innovation. To continue growing their economic activities, this community needed support defining their operational practices, their market penetration strategy and their positioning. Another specific need identified was the development of women's leadership at the Union level to enable personal and societal transformation and greater performance of the Union itself.

Umalia in action
  • Accompaniment of Crossroads International in preparing for partnerships with the private sector
  • Reflection and identification of the project that would best lend itself to such a partnership and which could arouse the interest of private partners
  • Conceptualization of the potential multi-sectoral partnership
  • Research, identification and selection of"best-fit" partners: Papillon MDC and GreenBeaver
  • Development and implementation of the agreement and governance of the partnership
  • Delivery of leadership training for the women union, in collaboration with Papillon MDC
The results of this multisectoral partnership are multiple and are to be seen for each partner:
Community of Senegalese women soap producers

·       Leadership development

·       Development of capacities, manufacturing methods, quality standards

·       New equipment (donation from Green Beaver)

·       Increased representation of young women in governance, production and marketing roles


Green Beaver

·       Enhanced awareness of international solidarity and developing employee commitment

·       Concrete evidence of the company's commitment to sustainable development and strengthening of its sense of commitment

·       Discovery of new native plants and new cold production methods

·       Discovery of new vegetable oils such as baobab, moringa or touloucouna oil


Crossroads International

·      Capacity building for partnership development

·      New experience with the private sector anchored in a project (vs. philanthropy)

·      Increased capacity to support its local partner

·      Development of new private partnerships and support for the NGO


Papillon MDC

·      Development of an approach and a training workshop on leadership development for women of the UNFCS (pro-bono training by Umalia),

·      Fulfilment of its primary mission

·      Concrete evidence of the company's commitment to vulnerable populations and strengthening of its sense of engagement

·      Increased visibility as an agent of change