Enabling Market Integration for Rural Group Empowerment (EMIRGE) program


Global Communities implements Enabling Market Integration through Rural Group Empowerment (EMIRGE), a cooperative development and learning program funded by the USAID Bureau for Economic Growth, Education and Environment (E3). EMIRGE focuses on stimulating early-stage cooperation by responding to a member-driven agenda and strengthening social capital and organizational capacity to advance the group enterprise and increase incomes. It provides technical support to community based organizations, government cooperative institutions, donor programs and private sector initiatives.

EMIRGE operates in Mongolia, Rwanda and since January 2016 in Kenya The field activities are part of a larger Global Cooperative Learning Program that builds on the experiences of cooperative members, private sector stakeholders and program implementers focusing on how cooperatives can impact members, their communities and markets around the world.

The Kenya Context

The EMIRGE Kenya is a 12 month operational research program that focuses on how to leverage effectively the power of collective resource to improve the livelihoods of urban youth. Many youth initiatives require youth to form groups to access services and support. More often than not these this approach fails to result in the viable incomes and outcomes. The EMIRGE initiative involves research on how youth can form effective member owned cooperatives, which will pave the way for collaborative design and implementation of pilot programs.

The Kenya program will use a market systems cooperative approach to integrating marginalized economic actors into the mainstream economy linking them to the services and markets that will drive their growth. The EMIRGE program focuses on strengthening both the institutional capacity and the social fabric of each cooperative, facilitating member driven enterprises that raise incomes and resilience at the household and community levels.

For more information contact:


USA Project Management
Kristin Wilcox, Program Manager


Kenya Country Office
Kimberly Tilock, Country Director