In everything we do, we have the empowerment of vulnerable and marginalised people, social entrepreneurs and other partners in focus. We lead by what we do, and share our learnings to find solutions and support the activities of social entrepreneurs. This way, we want to contribute to significant and lasting change.
We focus on three things
By focusing on inclusion, equality and livelihood we enable a better everyday life for people who struggle to provide for themselves and their families. To achieve this, every project we engage in should address and positively affect one or all of these three areas.
InclusionSupporting social entrepreneurs who strive to improve the terms on which individuals and groups take part in society. This involves providing jobs, incomes, capabilities and tools to those who are vulnerable and marginalised irrespective of their individual or group characteristics.
EqualityWorking with social entrepreneurs who look to make society more equal in terms of income, status, rights and opportunity. This involves supporting individuals or groups, but also changing systems, with a view to allow people to earn a decent and sustainable living.
LivelihoodUltimately aiming to lift people out of poverty by having the opportunity to earn a decent living. With increased inclusion and equality comes a better chance of a dignified life, where people have the possibility to provide for themselves and their families in a sustainable way.
This is how we work
Partnerships that inspire change
Our work is about inspiring and engaging others to make a change. It’s a collaboration between us, civil society organisations and social entrepreneurs. By doing business with social entrepreneurs and giving them access to our supply chain, we also create real and sustainable opportunities. To highlight the equal partnering, we focus on mutual learning and build on each other’s strengths. We look at how to use our knowledge and experience to help social entrepreneurs grow and have a bigger impact.
Through real businessPartnering with social entrepreneurs at a business level, we design and produce products and services that are sold and offered at IKEA stores worldwide. It is a win-win situation with high quality products manufactured and vulnerable peoples lives changed through the jobs created.
IKEA co-worker engagementWhat’s really unique about us is how we use our colleagues as a resource. Their involvement ranges from operational support for social entrepreneurs who make products for IKEA, to strategic development for the ones that don’t provide products or services for IKEA. At the same time, it gives us the opportunity to learn how to become more circular, sustainable and entrepreneurial in our business. It’s a relationship built on knowledge sharing, a mutual exchange of competences and inspiration.
Financial support to our partnersSince the characteristics and needs of each social entrepreneur are different, we will customise our financial support. This will be a choice between grants - without the demand for repayment or financial return - and loans.
The Theory of Change
This is a roadmap that outlines the steps by which we plan to achieve our goals.
- Social entrepreneurs scale up thanks to direct support and intermediaries.
- Social entrepreneurs and business scale up inside IKEA values chain.
- IKEA co-workers and business are engaged to support and develop social entrepreneurs.
- Social entrepreneurship approaches and learnings are shared in IKEA and externally.
- Vulnerable and marginalized people get better jobs, incomes and service.
- Systems change to address the needs and rights of vulnerable and marginalized people.
- IKEA and other corporates become more inclusive and sustainable.
- Greater opportunities for vulnerable and marginalized people to live a better everyday life
To challenge ourselves, we will share our knowledge and embrace new ways of working. We aim to be as transparent as possible so that others can learn from our success stories as well as from our shortcomings.