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ABOUT US

Shivia empowers the poorest to create livelihoods,
boost income and inspire permanent change


Shivia is a UK charity founded in 2008 by Olly Donnelly. Our aim is to empower very poor families to create enterprises, boost income and inspire permanent and positive change. We fundraise in the UK and, through our partner organisation Shivia India (Nirdhan), we operate our Livelihood Development Programme in West Bengal, one of the poorest states in India. Shivia’s Livelihood Development Programme gives families, and in particular women, the skills to start new enterprises and improve their power to earn. We chose poultry farming as our first enterprise for a number of reasons - Hindus, Muslims and Christians all eat chickens and eggs so there is a large market demand. Also very little land is needed to raise chickens. To date, we have helped over 6,600 very poor families start their own backyard poultry enterprise and work their way out of poverty.

In April 2014 we launched our second farming enterprise, Agri-management Services (AMS), to further help our home farmers who have access to small but unproductive plots of land. With training and advice, AMS is currently helping around 500 farmers make their land more fertile and produce higher crop yields, providing an additional income stream for them and their families. Most recently we researched and launched our third farming enterprise, Goateries. The pilot phase of this project is underway and 20 families are now in possession of a breeding pair of goats.

We are delighted that Shivia was shortlisted for the 2015 Charity Times award 'Charity of the Year' (income less than £1m).


“Shivia is not simply about giving aid. We are committed to creating sustainable enterprises.” OLLY DONNELLY, Founder & CEO

Video embed: 
Interview with Olly Donnelly, Founder & CEO, Shivia