Our mission at Utando Social Impact is a simple one: to effect positive and tangible change across diverse communities, by providing a platform for coordination of social impact efforts. From individuals, to not-for-profits, to corporations of all sizes; there is a role for every stakeholder to play in making our communities better.
Significant corporate and private resources are being poured into various social initiatives across the globe, with the noble aim of transforming communities, empowering the vulnerable and providing access to health, education and decent shelter. Why aren’t we seeing the positive change we expect? Where is the Return on Social Investment? Why so many duplicated efforts and fragmented initiatives? Is there a better way?
At Utando (Swahili for Cobweb), we believe there is another way. A better way. We are experts in piecing together various webs of social impact projects and services to create maximum value and impact. We are about sustainable solutions.
The time is now, and the world is ready and waiting for a better way forward; business and society alike. At Utando, we draw on decades of combined experience to turn our passion for social causes into a deeply impactful and practical reality.
Social Impact Services
One of our fundamental beliefs is that empowering entrepreneurs at local community level has a profound and long-term effect on the social and financial fabric of that community. Through provision of services such as training, mentoring, and shared resources, our incubation hubs nurture the development of income-generating, sustainable ventures for the benefit of both the social entrepreneurs and the communities they operate in. We invest in high potential start ups as well. We also build ventures to make them investment ready.
Social Impact Strategy
The social investment ecosystem is complex. In the social sector, we tend to think a lot about impact but don’t necessarily give enough attention to strategy—and yet the two are completely intertwined.This connection is clarified by a well thought out strategy.
To that end, we assist organizations with impact strategy to achieve long-term performance through clarifying social change goals and how they’re seeking to get there because that becomes critical to figuring out how to assess social impact.
A contribution towards society; at any level, produces that familiar “feel good” feeling. However, how can we track and measure the actual impact donations and interventions have on a community? Utando; by using modern tools and technology brings clarity and quantification to social investments. We pride ourselves in providing facts and figures to go along with the warm and fuzzies. Drawing from our expansive global reach and our strength in aligning client interests with the needs of local communities we conduct analysis of where resources are most needed and could have the most effect. We employ cutting-edge technology and tools to monitor and evaluate projects, ensuring that every spend creates utmost impact.
ESG Strategy and Reporting
We assist companies with formulating ESG strategy as well as the disclosure and reporting of data covering a company's operations in three areas: environmental, social and corporate governance. We help companies report on the business's impact in these three areas for investors, customers and wider stakeholders.
Who We Are
Dana is a co-founder at Utando. Her role includes leading the Social Impact Coordination and Shared Value Services Department. Dana is a thought leader on doing business in emerging markets and entrepreneur with a diverse skillset developed over a decade spent in various corporate roles. She relocated to South Africa from the United States in 2015 and before co-founding Utando Impact was the Financial Director of the South African entities for an American engineering and manufacturing company.
Dana is passionate about finding ways to catalyse economic growth and inclusion, helping to make the proverbial “pie” bigger (and more inclusive) for all. In her role as head of Social Impact Coordination and Shared Value Services, Dana works with corporates, government and communities in identifying and aligning social impact interests, coordinates resources and plays a major role in ensuring that such resources are used for attainment of maximum impact. Dana, a Certified Public Accountant; holds a Finance Degree from Indiana University and a Master of Business Administration Degree from the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business.
Alforde is a co-founder at Utando Social Impact Solutions. His role includes overseeing the Entrepreneurial Development and Impact Analysis Department. He has more than a decade of experience in building thriving businesses with a social focus and working with start-ups, some of which have grown into multi-million rand organizations. Alforde is a serial social entrepreneur, with investments in property, logistics, and social impact ventures; thus, he brings with him vast knowledge on entrepreneurship especially in the emerging market context. He has deep knowledge about complexities that exist in communities having worked with local communities both in Africa and the United States.
As someone with a contagious passion for transforming communities, Alforde has worked with major global private and non-profit companies on diverse projects ranging from healthcare and education to housing, energy and food security as a Social Impact Consultant and Senior Advisor to Board of Directors. These roles have seen him build teams to tackle social ills in North America, South America, Europe and Southern Africa. He is especially passionate about developing social entrepreneurs through establishment of entrepreneur incubation hubs, mentoring and coaching. He brings to Utando; his deep knowledge about Social Impact Analysis and Measurement as well as Project Management Expertise. Alforde also holds a Masters in Social Innovation from the University of Cambridge Judge Business School and is enrolled for a Doctoral degree in Business Administration at the Warwick Business School,University of Warwick, researching the intersection between Impact Investing, Social Entrepreneurship and Underserved Communities.