The iF Foundation is a private foundation, founded in 2002 by the Iovino Family. Tom Iovino, Founder and President of the iF Foundation has always had a passion and a desire to create sustainable economic opportunities for the disadvantaged in the developing countries of the world. Tom believes that charity is not the answer and that the disadvantaged seek dignity, not dependence. Through the iF Foundation, Tom’s entrepreneurial approach to solving global poverty is giving philanthropists an opportunity to help create sustainable economic opportunities for the disadvantaged while transforming communities.
Annual Message from Our Founder
Since the beginning of our economic development work in Haiti and Ghana, my vision of bridging the disparity between charity and opportunity has always been the driving force behind our mission. Throughout the developing world and especially in Haiti, there is an overwhelming lack of development funding available to those living in poverty. Coupled with the non-existence of financial institutions necessary to provide sufficient capital to local farmers and families to secure their own futures, economic development is challenging.
In addition, there has been an erosion of commercial agricultural skills in Haiti especially due to the influx of donations and cheap “by-product” merchandise such as frozen chicken legs. There is a great need to develop local markets for product output stabilizing and strengthening local economies. This year we have learned the importance of partnering donations from philanthropic investors like you with market solutions to create sustainable business. This combination of philanthropy and best business practices is proving to be the catalyst sparking stronger economies, entrepreneurship and a pathway for economic development and poverty alleviation. Thank you for your confidence in our work and continued support.
Traditional charity often meets immediate needs, but many times fails to empower people to solve their own problems. Job creation through economic development has the ability to sustain families and communities long after charitable dollars are gone. When faced with limited financial resources, non-existent markets and government corruption, it is critical to overcome these obstacles in a creative, entrepreneurial way that is adaptable to unique cultures.
This year the iF Foundation has continued with its mission of creating economic opportunities for the disadvantaged in the developing countries of the world, enabling and empowering the people living in these communities to create their own pathway out of poverty. During the last decade we have learned many lessons on how to accomplish our goals. Each lesson has assisted us in adapting to the unique cultures in the countries where we work. The one common thread among these lessons is that people of all cultures want to live a life of dignity. This can only be achieved through opportunity. Opportunity for those living in poverty and opportunity for you to choose to walk with me, alongside those we are empowering to build brighter livelihoods and stronger communities.
Thank you again for your generous support and dedication to our mission.
Founder and President
The iF Foundation