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Open-source tools for set up of eco-credit groups houses and disseminates knowledge and tools which support use of the community eco-credit methodology, designed to build environmental, financial and social wealth.


What is Community Eco-Credit?

“Community eco-credit” is an experimental, interdisciplinary methodology designed to create economic and behavioural incentives for individuals to participate in voluntary and self-determined actions which protect or restore vital ecosystems. 

Since 2017, the methodology has been tested at three pilot sites. Early results indicate that, with sufficient support, members of participating groups increase their contribution to ecological restoration and protection activities, repay loans, steadily increase their funds and gain experience in financial and environmental management. In our theory of change, this activity contributes to the building of community environmental, financial and social health.


Information about the methodology can be found in the Greenfi White Paper.  This explains the methodology's benefits, costs, risks, and the trade-offs created by using the approach. The white paper also explains what is unproven or we don't yet know, and sets out the key principles or guidelines that need to be adhered to when using community eco-credit.

Please contact us via the form for further information.


5-Step Approach to Set-up of Eco-Credit Groups


Group Recruitment

Eco-credit groups of c. 25-30 people are recruited, trained & capitalised with a seed grant


Constitution & Planning

Eco-credit groups agree a group constitution covering group governance, fund rules and credit terms, and a self-determined plan for management of targeted natural resources and associated activities. 


Issue of Loans

Eco-credit groups issue loans to members, and the terms of the loan require participation in activities defined at Step 2.


Repayment & Action

The borrower repays the loan and undertakes the required activities.


Impact Reporting

Eco-credit groups  track, monitor and report on financial and environmental impact, and are rewarded with further milestone grant payments.


Open-Source Tools Provided by (slide right/scroll down to see all)


Greenfi provides a free-to-use methodology, set of protocols and supporting documentation which embed best practice for set-up of eco-credit groups. 

Training Materials

We provide a training system for project managers and coordinators and material for consistent and effective training of the communities themselves.


We provide loan and environmental tracking tools in both pen and paper and digital form. Digital tools are open-source for self-hosting and management.


Greenfi holds a set of principles and questionnaire for either self audit or by a recommended expert.

ABOUT was set up to develop the community eco-credit approach, and test and make available tools for the formation and growth of eco-credit groups. 


Greenfi's initial hypothesis was that credit terms which include requirements for protection and restoration of nature offered by small community-level credit cooperatives offer a route to more sustainable use of natural resources.


We further hypothesised that by developing, testing and making available a toolkit and advice, we could help NGOs, companies and government agencies to set-up community-level green credit cooperatives which we call eco-credit groups, and validate their efficacy as a natural resource management tool in the land and seascapes where they operate.


Whilst popular with group participants and organisations which use the model, we are still at an early stage of testing given the complex human-environmental systems in which the tool is intended to be used and limited funding for development of an innovative approach. As such, we continue to learn about how the model can best be used and the contexts to which it is most appropriate. We continue to assess the model for delivery of its long term aims. Our current state of knowledge is explained in the White Paper.  

Greenfi does not have an on-the-ground presence but recommends consultants experienced in the model to support local set-up and training. All its tools are in the public domain and available free-of-charge. is hosted by Ecosystem Equity Limited but functions under a committee comprised of its founders and other stakeholders, the chair of which alternates between committee members.


Organisations Using the Community Eco-Credit Approach


Local NGO in Zanzibar and Mainland Tanzania

No. of groups: 88

(click for partner site)


Local NGO operating on the Kenyan coast

No. of groups: 25

(click for partner site)

Greenfi  pilot site

A pilot site in an agricultural landscape in Nyandarua, Kenya

No. of groups: 3

Sea Sense

Local NGO operating on the Tanzanian coast

No. of groups: funding for 19

(click for partner site)


International NGO operating in Tanzania's Southern Highlands

No. of groups: funding for 100

(click for partner site)

New Partner

Greenfi organises training to new organisations on request.


What is an eco-credit group?

Community eco-credit groups are self-managed community groups of approximately 30 people which own and  run a revolving credit fund which is loaned amongst group members. Groups include requirements for nature protection and restoration in loan terms. Detailed descriptions of the groups, their composition and governance can be found in the White Paper. 

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