World Resources Institute
The World Resources Institute (WRI) is a research non-profit organization working globally and in focus countries to meet people’s essential needs; to protect and restore nature; and to stabilize the climate and build resilient communities.
WRI develops data-driven research, tools and global partnerships to safeguard, maintain and restore forests and other natural landscapes. WRI’s approach includes partnering with governments, entrepreneurs, investors and experts to build the social and financial conditions for conserving natural landscapes and restoring degraded ones.
Through its Global Restoration Initiative, WRI and its partners developed a suite of programs with one common goal: directly finance people restoring land. The Land Accelerator trains and supports entrepreneurs whose companies restore degraded land. This valuable network of business and investment opportunities can also help accelerate restoration across Africa, Latin America and South Asia.
The TerraFund, previously known as the Rural Prosperity Bond (RPB), provides loans to SMEs working in land restoration in Africa, South Asia and Latin America. WRI is also helping leaders of NGOs and restoration businesses connect with corporate funding made available through the Trillion Trees platform and the Priceless Planet Coalition.
WRI’s TerraMatch platform pairs funders’ preferences, from geography to type of land and beyond, with vetted, locally-run projects that grow trees the right way. The platform’s built-in monitoring feature shows where trees are growing within project boundaries – and where investors are getting a return on their investment.
WRI also works to support governments in mobilizing public finance for restoring forests and landscapes. Governments have committed to restore 210 million hectares of farms, forests, and pasture through the global Bonn Challenge and regional initiatives AFR100 in Africa and Initiative 20x20 in Latin America. To reach those ambitious goals, national and local governments are designing policies and plans that help people to restore land and keep it healthy.
Financing Instrument: Grants, Loans, Technical Assistance
Project scale: In 2022, TerraFund for AFR100 invested in Africa’s Top 100 locally led land restoration projects. Located across 27 member countries of the AFR100 Initiative, these community-based non-profits and enterprises received grants or loans of $50,000 to $500,000 each.
Recipient countries/ regions/ country groups: Africa, Latin America and Asia
Recipient entities: Governments, Businesses, NGOs/ CBOs
The Land Accelerator is a training program and curated network for entrepreneurs who restore degraded forests and farmland. It is anchored by an intensive week-long workshop when the cohort meets in person. There is no fee to join, and the program does not take equity.
TerraMatch supports locally led tree-growing projects run by either community-based non-profit organizations or small-and-medium enterprises by connecting them to funding and technical assistance. Each request for proposals on TerraMatch will have its own specifications for applicants. Eligibility will be determined based on the particular criteria of each funding cycle.
Entrepreneurs interested in joining the Land Accelerator should monitor the WRI website for updates: https://www.wri.org/initiatives/land-accelerator/apply-land-accelerator
TerraMatch hosts the application process for proposals when new capital is ready to be deployed. Interested organizations can prepare for upcoming opportunities by creating a profile: terramatch.org/auth/signup
For more information, visit https://www.terramatch.org/