Ria Champions Local Teams as part of Social Business Philosophy

“I believe that we can create a poverty-free world because poverty is not created by poor people. It has been created and sustained by the economic and social systems that we have designed for ourselves; the institutions and concepts that make up that system; the policies that we pursue.” – Professor Muhammad Yunus.



Nobel Peace Prize recipient Prof. Muhammad Yunus at a YY Foundation event in the cultural centre “Schlachthof” in Wiesbaden, Germany. Image: Martin Kraft (photo.martinkraft.com) Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

When Nobel Peace Prize winner Professor Muhammad Yunus spoke these words he not only highlighted how poverty is a man-made product but also implied that businesses, governments, and institutions hold the key to eradicating this issue altogether.

In addition to concepts surrounding microcredit and microfinance, Professor Yunus was one of the founding fathers of the concept of social business, whereby businesses and other organisations set up philanthropic programmes in order to give back to the community. This might mean by helping to improve the environment and, crucially, the lives of those people who are less fortunate.

Philosophically speaking, Yunus identifies a social business as one which is based on the two motives of human beings: selfishness and selflessness. Selfishly, businesses seek to generate the most profit possible from the sale of their products and services.

A social business, therefore, is one which combines this element with the latter idea of being selfless and setting up additional programmes and services which benefit the community. By adapting ‘selfish’ business models in this way a firm is engaging in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

Supporting Champions

One of our latest programmes, launched in Germany last year, aims to support ethnic sports teams based in the local community. The programme is named Supporting Champions and the main objective is to support local ethnic teams in a range of different sports including soccer, cricket, swimming, etc. We hope that by providing teams with the sporting gear and helping them with what they need, they will eventually – or at least have the real chance to – become champions in their field. So far, we are pleased to say, the team results and progress have been fantastic!

As a company that is in the business of people as much as it is in the business of money transfer, we are proud to carry the torch of social responsibility first lit by Professor Muhammad Yunus, who also believes that ‘the right to have credit should be a fundamental human right’. At Ria we are committed to, not only, supporting the local communities we work with, but also the global community, which includes those who have little access to financial services. So In addition to providing revolving credit for our Agents, we are working hard to make CSR another firm branch of the Ria business.

“Being socially responsible not only forms part of the company’s DNA, it is also part of our commitment to our customers,” explains Patricio Rojas Hubner, Business Development and Marketing Manager for Germany.

“In Germany, like other countries in Europe, the Supporting Champions programme has been developed to help communities where we have a presence.  The concept of being more social and participating in  community activities allows us to be more attuned to what is happening at a local level, helps us to be more integrated with the different communities, and allows us to be more aware of local needs and local realities,” affirms Rojas Hubner.

Below you can see some snaps from some of the local sports teams that Ria is currently supporting in Germany.

“Our objective is to support many more and reach out to other important communities for Germany such as Turkey, Bulgaria, Kosovo, Romania, among others,” adds Rojas Hubner.