The BOMA Project, Inc.

Prosperity With Dignity

aka The BOMA Project   |   Manchester Center, WA   |  www.bomaproject.org

Mission

The BOMA Project empowers women in the drylands of Africa to establish sustainable livelihoods, build resilient families, graduate from extreme poverty and catalyze change in their rural communities.

Notes from the nonprofit

In November 2013, BOMA was named one of six "Women for Results" Lighthouse Activities by the United Nations, honoring innovative women-led climate-change solutions worldwide.

In 2016, BOMA was among the first four nonprofits worldwide to pass a rigorous “impact audit" conducted by Impact Matters, an organization led by Yale economist Dean Karlan that helps donors to identify nonprofits that offer the best return on charitable dollars. For more information, go to http://bomaproject.org/.

Ruling year info

2006

Founder and CEO

Kathleen Colson

Main address

PO Box 1865

Manchester Center, WA 05255 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

84-1671995

NTEE code info

International Economic Development (Q32)

Economic Development (S30)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2019, 2018 and 2017.
Register now

Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

BOMA’s target areas in remote eastern Africa represent the last mile of extreme poverty and economic isolation. In recent years, a significant percentage of residents in these pastoral, livestock dependent, and highly patriarchal societies were driven even deeper into poverty due to repeated cycles of severe drought and conflict over dwindling grazing lands and water resources. Women and children bear the brunt of the adverse impacts of climate change and a system that perpetuates aid dependence. Governments are heavily reliant on international aid and, along with NGOs and international donors, are often focused on short-term, crisis-driven humanitarian response efforts. BOMA envisions a new equilibrium where governments, donors, and NGOs invest in long-term, sustainable approaches that are focused on building the resilience of the most vulnerable populations.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

REAP - Rural Entrepreneur Access Project

BOMA’s Rural Entrepreneur Access Project (REAP) is an innovative poverty graduation program that builds the resiliency of women living in extreme poverty in the drylands of Africa, so they can survive drought and adapt to a changing climate. Through a sequence of interventions, REAP helps groups of three women—the poorest and most vulnerable—to start a small business in their rural communities. With a sustainable income that’s not tied to the drought-threatened livestock industry, women can feed their families, pay for school fees and medical care, and build up savings for long-term stability.

Over the course of two years, the REAP interventions include two asset transfers of cash (seed capital to launch and grow the business), training in basic business skills and financial literacy, regular coaching by a local BOMA Village Mentor, and the introduction of mentored savings associations that meet monthly for deposits, withdrawals, loan requests and additional training.

REAP helps women to build a pathway out of extreme poverty by addressing three related elements that contribute to the cycle of aid dependency in the drylands of Africa: low incomes, inconsistent cash flows and inadequate financial services for the rural poor. Profits from each REAP business provide a new and diversified income, while BOMA savings associations help women to manage cash flow (for daily needs), plan for future expenses (such as school fees and medical care), and respond to shocks (such as drought or family emergencies). Meanwhile, interest-bearing loans offered by BOMA savings associations are often the first—and only—source of cash and credit in the community, serving as an informal village bank. With the scale-up of BOMA’s mobile banking program in 2016, selected participants will have an individual mobile bank account, connected to a shared BOMA savings group account. Participants will also be able to purchase goods, receive money and access loans from any location by using their phones – a huge step forward for women in storing and transferring money safely and securely and achieving financial inclusion.

BOMA is unique primarily for the population we target and the region where we work. BOMA is a recognized pioneer in developing a poverty graduation program that is specifically tailored for women living in extreme poverty in the drylands of Africa—remote and rural regions with low population densities, little to no infrastructure or employment opportunities, and a longstanding sole reliance on livestock for food and income. BOMA is also unique for its commitment to local leadership: Our full-time, paid Village Mentors live in the villages where we work, and our business groups, savings associations and skills-training methodologies respect cultural norms while fostering adaptation. Our work is also distinguished by an ongoing commitment to rigorous monitoring and evaluation to track our outcomes, continually improve our program, and prove its long-term impact as a sustainable, scalable poverty graduation model for ultra-poor women across the African drylands.

BOMA is one of only four nonprofits worldwide to pass a rigorous "impact audit" conducted by ImpactMatters, led by Yale economist Dean Karlan. . Founded with the goal of helping donors identify nonprofits that offer the best return on charitable dollars, the audit assesses nonprofits in four key areas: cost-effectiveness, transparency, knowledge sharing, and "theory of change” (how well the organization accomplishes its mission). BOMA was selected after completing a comprehensive six-month audit with Karlan’s team, which examined BOMA’s program design, data collection and analysis, financial management, and overall effectiveness.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Awards

Sol Feinstone Award for Humanitarian Service 2010

St. Lawrence University

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Percentage of women in the program who have graduated from extreme poverty.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

REAP - Rural Entrepreneur Access Project

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Results of 2018 endline analysis of cohort of 750 women based on 5 graduation criteria.

Number of women and children impacted by our program

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

REAP - Rural Entrepreneur Access Project

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Total number of women and children impacted by our program since 2009.

Percentage increase in children going to bed WITH an evening meal.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

REAP - Rural Entrepreneur Access Project

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Results from a 2018 Endline study of a cohort of 750 women enrolled in 2016.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

1. Reduce extreme poverty in the African drylands through a replicable poverty graduation program to benefit women and child.
2. Build resilience and catalyze change in rural dryland communities through the increased engagement of women in community development planning.
3. Solidify the capacity of the organization to sustain and institutionalize a high standard of monitoring and evaluation processes.
4. Diversify fundraising sources and increase the fundraising capacity of the organization.
5. Align board and senior staffing structures to accomplish the goals of the organization and allow for succession planning.

1. Standardize the REAP model, define a replication strategy, analyze and improve the local mentor model, and conduct longevity studies to ensure sustained productivity.
2. Pilot and evaluate empowerment training programs, and develop survey tools to evaluate the impact of these programs and identify potential areas of change.
3. Establish a data-driven monitoring and evaluation process that provides real-time access to high-quality information, while maximizing feedback from BOMA's Randomized Controlled Trial and working to establish an affiliation with a university or research institution.
4. Expand fundraising department in the U.S. and Kenya by improving supporting systems systems, as well as increasing BOMA's visibility through various strategies including publishing articles and building the fundraising capacity of the board.
5. Align staffing structures to fill key positions and recruit board members.

We have increased staff on the ground in Kenya to scale up the scope of our program in Samburu and Marsabit counties.

We are partnering with the Kenyan government to adopt our model and implement it in additional areas as part of their PROFIT (Programme for Rural Outreach of Financial Innovations) social protection system in Samburu county.

We are implementing an agreement with Mercy Corps to replicate BOMA's model in new regions of northern Kenya and with Caritas and Catholic Relief Services to replicate our model in Uganda.

To date, since 2009, we have enrolled 22,915 women with 114,575 dependent children, for a total of 137,490 women and children. Our goal is to reach 1,000,000 women and children by 2022. BOMA is experiencing rapid growth both in the scale of our reach and in the expansion of the organization, and we are taking care to ensure that our growth goes hand in hand with the most rigorous standards and accountability.

Financials

The BOMA Project, Inc.
lock

Unlock financial insights by subscribing to our monthly plan.

Subscribe

Unlock nonprofit financial insights that will help you make more informed decisions. Try our monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights?
Learn more about GuideStar Pro.

Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

The BOMA Project, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 8/10/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

William Ambrose

Stone Silo Advisors, LLC


Board co-chair

Jim Young

Davidoff North America- Davidoff of Geneva Distribution

Katie Kelly

Kenyon Business Consulting

Kathleen Colson

The BOMA Project

Douglas Colson

Dorset Capital Partners

William Ambrose

Stone Silo Advisors, LLC

Jim Young

Davidoff of North America / Davidoff of Geneva Distribution

James Salsgiver

Salsgiver & Associates

Katherine Roome

Nancy Stroupe

John Templeton Foundation

H. Perry Boyle, Jr.

Stamford Harbor Capital P

Ham Zamberu

Norwegian Refugee Council

Iltsayon Neepe

Ladylori Helicopter Charter Service, Ltd.

Asha Ngoley

Kenya Red Cross

Ahmed Kura Omar

The BOMA Project

John Stephens

Vibrant Village Foundation

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes