About Us


Our mission is to alleviate poverty by building self-reliance through workforce development.


Our vision is to lead the way in creating self-reliant communities comprised of empowered and engaged individuals who improve their quality of life and alleviate poverty.


Our founder, Dr. Leon H. Sullivan, was a civil rights activist, human rights advocate, and global influencer who made history as the first African American director of a major corporation when he took a seat on the board of General Motors in 1971. He developed the Global Sullivan Principles to support social and political justice in apartheid South Africa, and believed in the power of the individual to lift himself out of poverty if provided the opportunity to make a decent living.

Our Philosophy

The main tenets of our organizational philosophy are:

  • Self-help: We believe in empowering individuals, institutions and communities through the transfer of knowledge and skills.
  • Capacity building: Our programs enable our beneficiaries to become productive members of their communities through the provision of life, job and business skills.
  • Social enterprise: Our programs are community-based and market driven to ensure that they meet community needs and are fiscally responsible.
  • Partnership: We believe that development is a communal effort and that only through effective cooperation will the needs of the developing world be met. In this spirit, we have a proud history of welcoming international, national, regional and local partners in all our work.

This philosophy is based upon our founder, Dr. Leon H. Sullivan’s, principles, also known as the Global Sullivan principles. Used to help establish an ethical code of conduct for businesses to operate, they have been adopted by numerous corporations since 1999.