This week, we had the pleasure of speaking with Jackline Onyango, Senior Investment Officer, based in Nairobi, Kenya.

  • Jackline, What do you like most at BlueOrchard?

“I most enjoy working with the team at BlueOrchard, particularly the Kenyan team. Coming from a different industry, I have found the people here incredibly helpful and willing to teach me across the various teams with which I have engaged. The continuous learning opportunities have been both exciting and energising for me, keeping me motivated every day. I enjoy working in the impact investing industry because it allows me to combine my passion for creating positive social and environmental change with my skills in finance and investments. I love knowing that the work I do directly contributes to making the world a better place and helping to address pressing issues such as inequality, climate change, and poverty. It’s fulfilling to be a part of a community of like-minded individuals who are all working towards a common goal of creating a more sustainable and equitable world.”

  • Why did you decide to work in impact investing?

“As an impact investor, I was drawn to this field because I wanted to use my financial resources and skills to make a positive difference in the world. I believe that we have a responsibility to consider the social and environmental implications of our investments and work towards creating a more sustainable and equitable future for all. Impact investing allows me to align my personal values with my professional work, as I can support businesses and projects that are creating meaningful change while also generating financial returns. I find fulfilment in knowing that my investments are contributing to social and environmental impact, and I am motivated by the potential to drive positive change through investing in worthy ventures. Overall, working in impact investing provides me with a sense of purpose and fulfilment, as it is a worthy avenue to make a meaningful difference in the world.”

  • What is the most memorable experience you have made during your time at BlueOrchard?

“One of the most memorable experiences during my time at BlueOrchard was meeting an end borrower in Zambia. Hearing his story first-hand was truly inspiring. Thanks to multiple funding rounds from an institution BlueOrchard funds, he was able to transition from selling packaging bags on the streets to becoming a wholesaler with his own store in the local market. What was particularly touching was seeing the ripple effect of his success, as his business supported an entire ecosystem of women traders who relied on his packaging bags. Not only did this opportunity improve his family’s quality of life, but it also enabled him to educate his children and dream of expanding to another market. This experience highlighted the tangible impact of our investments and reinforced the importance of empowering individuals to create sustainable livelihoods and uplift their communities. It was a powerful reminder of the transformative power of financial inclusion and support in driving positive change.”

  • What is the biggest global challenge in your view?

“One of the biggest global challenges we face is inequality, encompassing economic, social, gender, and racial disparities. Economic inequality, in particular, feels like the trigger for the rest as it results in limited access to basic necessities, perpetuating poverty and hindering social mobility. Social, gender, and racial inequalities compound these challenges, leading to discrimination and exclusion, weakening social cohesion, and impeding societal progress. In my view, addressing these deep-rooted issues requires systemic changes in economic structures, social programs, and cultural attitudes at both policy and grassroots levels. The most obvious way to create a more equal world necessitates investments in education, healthcare, and social welfare, alongside initiatives to promote diversity, inclusion, and equity across all sectors of society. By tackling inequality in all its forms, we can strive towards a fairer, more inclusive, and sustainable world for current and future generations.”