Friends of Hand in Hand International

Friends of Hand in Hand International is the newest member of the global Hand in Hand team. Based in New York City, we ‘re a registered 501(c)(3) organization connecting donors in the world’s most entrepreneurial country, the US, to grassroots entrepreneurs in some of its poorest.

Since launching in 2003, our global network has created more than 3 million jobs. Read on to discover more about our work or connect with one of our team. Otherwise, you can visit the main Hand in Hand website here.

How we work

Group leader Padmavathi reading out minutes to her fellow members | Self-Help Group | Kanchipuram, India

Group leader Padmavathi and her fellow members | Self-Help Group | Kanchipuram, India

Our work proceeds in four stages. First, we recruit groups of would-be entrepreneurs and teach them to save. Next, we provide business and skills training to help them get up and running. If they need a small start-up loan – and they’ve got the business plan to prove it – we provide that, too. And to help grow their businesses once they’re firmly established, we plug them into bigger markets and value chains.

Read more

Where we work

Hand in Hand has active operations in five countries, with 2 million members and counting from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. Support offices are based in Sweden, the UK and the US.

Click here for the latest news and figures from across our network.

Annual Report

Last year saw the successful conclusion of three major programs, along with the expansion of three more. Of course, there were challenges, too – drought in Kenya and unrest in Afghanistan not least among them.

Download our Annual Report for more details, and to learn more about our plans for 2017-’18.

Meet the team

Head of Partnerships

Jessica Benjamin

Jessica Benjamin began her career at Genesis Analytics, Africa's largest economics consultancy, where she focused on market-based solutions to poverty, specializing in youth unemployment and financial education. Since then she has worked on projects ranging from micro-enterprise development in Colombia to supply chain management for HIV/AIDS drugs in Tanzania.

When she's not working pro bono at FoHiHI, Jessica's role at Applied Value spans management consulting, private equity and micro-entrepreneurship, combining her interests in business and economic development.


Rob Fiore

Rob has more than 20 years’ experience in accounting and finance. Since 2005 he has been Chief Financial Officer at Applied Value Group, a professional services and investment group working in management consulting, merger and acquisition advice and management training, with offices in the US, Europe and China.

Rob has served as Treasurer of Friends of Hand in Hand International, on a pro bono basis, since 2013. He holds a B.S. in Accounting from Merrimack College and a Master of Business Administration from Southern New Hampshire University.
Tel: +1 978 828 9768