Greenlight results prove TCB’s impact!

Greenlight results and insights of TCB Graduates - 2022

Have you ever wondered what impact non-profit organisations and social enterprises have on communities they serve? The Greenlight Movement is here to help us understand. The Greenlight Movement is a group of over 100 non-profits, social enterprises, and businesses that use the Greenlight approach to measure, understand, and give evidence of their social impact. 

What is the Greenlight approach?

The Greenlight tool is a social methodology and metric (survey) that encourages households to participate and own their journey to a better quality of life. It also allows organisations to articulate the progress of poverty eradication and social impact against their programme objectives. 

Taking Care of Business (TCB) has been using the Greenlight tool for over a decade to assess the progress of its beneficiaries against 50 poverty indicators. The Greenlight approach uses a survey with multi-dimensional indicators that can be delivered via an app or on paper. The survey assesses poverty levels using 50 indicators grouped into 6 dimensions of poverty and for each of the 50 indicators, there are three scenarios to choose from.

6 dimensions of poverty

Income & employment

Health & environment

Housing & infrastructure

Education & culture

Organisation & participation

Interiority & motivation

3 scenarios to access poverty levels

Measuring the long-term Impact of the TCB Resell Programme

We conducted 4 Greenlight assessments with 84 participants from 5 TCB branches who started and completed the TCB Resell programme between 2017 and 2022. Measuring long-term impact that includes the year after a beneficiary had graduated from the programme.  

Graph 1: Sample of participants

The Resell programme has been changing lives in South Africa. Let’s take a look at the amazing insights and results from the programme over the past five years!

Insight 1: Helping eradicate poverty and sustain impact over time

Our participants showed an outstanding impact over time, moving from an average score of 34:12:4 (green:orange:red) at the start of the programme to 47:2:1 a year after graduating from the programme.

The number of indicators reported as red and yellow declined over the timeline, showing a definite shift towards improvement

The biggest impact is made in Year 1 (average of 67%) and is embedded in Year 2 (average of 16%) and continues to improve over time. After the graduates exited the programme, they continued to work on their lives, and it is inspiring to see that participants manage to sustain and improve their efforts to hold on to the recently acquired quality of life. 

This is a huge validation of TCB’s Theory of Change and shows that our programme not only helps participants maintain their quality of life, but also continue to improve over time! 

Graph 2: Average amount of change (in points) between surveys

Graph 3: Average participant score, per survey timeline

Insight 2: Empowering financial independence & building stable income sources

The Resell programme is delivering real results for its participants, with 77% of them earning R5 000 or more per month by the end of the first year.

This is a significant improvement from the 71% who were struggling/stuck with this indicator at the start of the programme. The Resell model is not just providing handouts, but rather helping participants build their own stable income sources. By the end of the first year, 70% of participants improved their ability to generate stable, reliable income for their families.

Despite the challenges posed by Covid-19, lockdowns, and other disruptions, these participants have been able to sustain their efforts and achieve financial independence and stability.  

Graph 4: Income/earnings above the poverty line for graduates, 2017 – 2022

Graph 5: Stable employment and income sources for graduates, 2017 – 2022

Insight 3: Family savings a struggle in South Africa

The highest level of deprivation at the start of the programme was in the area of family savings, with 77% of participants reporting they "never or almost never" saved.

This struggle to change was found to be due to various reasons such as living hand-to-mouth (survival mode), lack of role models, being in debt, and cultural beliefs. However, it was heartening to see that when it came to family savings, 77% are doing well by year 4 as opposed to 92% who felt stuck or struggling in this indicator at baseline.

One of the key skills to financial resilience is the ability to plan and budget effectively. At the start of the programme only 12% of participants felt they were doing well with the capacity to budget and plan but after completing the program this number rose to 77% and continued to rise to 88% a full year after graduation.

Participants are continuing to learn and grow in their ability to manage money. It’s a powerful result. 

Graph 6: Family savings for graduates, 2017 – 2022

Graph 7: Capacity to budget and plan for graduates, 2017 – 2022

Insight 4: Setting and sharing personal goals turn dreams into realities

After 1 year attending a TCB programme most participants and their family members understand their current situation and dream of a better life.

This is in no small way encouraged by participants being able to listen to each other talk about their goals at TCB and sharing in a group vision of a better life. Participants have short, medium, long-term goals and their families are talking together about common goals, and stretching to reach them. Often these dreams become realities! 

Graph 8: Awareness of needs: life map and personal goals for graduates, 2017-2022

Insight 5: Entrepreneurial spirit and motivation are skills that can be learnt

95%, almost all our graduates, reported doing well in the indicator for entrepreneurial spirit and motivation.

Starting a business can be scary, especially for older women. But the TCB Resell programme is empowering participants to take well-thought-out risks, learn from their mistakes, and become highly motivated entrepreneurs. By the end of the first year, the participants are not afraid of failure and are eager to keep growing and achieving their goals. This transformation in mindset is sustained all the way to graduation and beyond. 

Graph 9: Entrepreneurial spirit and motivation for graduates, 2017 – 2022


These are just a few of the amazing insights from the Greenlight results. It’s clear to see that the TCB Resell participants are making a real difference in their lives and in their communities. We are so proud of their hard work and determination! 

The TCB Resell programme is a holistic human development intervention that transforms participants inside and out. The programme’s unique heads-heart-hands approach is showing incredible results, helping unemployed mothers to become the captain of their own ship and steer their families towards a better future. 

The result? Families are transformed. And the transformation is sustained over time. 

The TCB Resell programme alters the trajectory of a family’s life, for good.  

Ready to be inspired? Check out the full Greenlight Movement report here and see the amazing impact the TCB Resell programme is making in South Africa. 

Bradley Freeman

Bradley Freeman, a TCB Repair Graduate, overcame drug addiction and is now self-employed, running an appliance repair and sales business. He has eradicated poverty from his life and is financially and socially independent. Most importantly, he has dignity. Now, he is paying it forward.

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