Family entrepreneurship with financial autonomy and family unity.

An integral approach focused on family dialogue and the goals of employability and financial autonomy to achieve a better quality of life.

Photo of Macarena Currin
8 33

Written by


  • Yes, I fulfill all of the eligibility criteria.

Initiative's representative name

Macarena Sabina Currín Letelier

Initiative's representative date of birth

September 23, 1957

Initiative’s representative gender

  • Woman

Which eligible market are you based in?

  • Chile

Where are you making a difference?

Chile: Metropolitan Region: Communities of Santiago, Lo Barnechea, Renca, C. Navia, and Puente Alto

Website or social media url(s)

When was your organisation founded?

The organization was founded in August, 1987

Focus areas

  • Financial skills and capability
  • Reskilling and upskilling the workforce

Project Stage

  • Scaling (expanding impact to many new places or in many new ways) 

Yearly Budget: How much capital do you need to accomplish your proposed project?

  • $250k - $500k

Organisation Type

  • Non-profit / NGO

1. Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that led the founder(s) to get started or the story of how you saw the potential for this to succeed

The magical moment occurred more than 32 years ago. When I remember that moment, that same emotion and magical force that I felt that night invades me. I feel summoned again, and I feel that Rodelillo again activates my social passion. What happened that night was that I realized that thousands of families who were living in extreme vulnerability had stopped dreaming and had never created a plan to move forward. This caused me great pain. I realized that in my own times of extreme family poverty we never lacked time to dream, to share our lives, and to create a plan. Having a family plan is absolutely essential. A plan embracing the dreams, collaboration and teamwork of each and every family member is vital.

2. The problem: What problem surrounding employability or financial capability are you helping to solve?

We address financial health and income generation, and its impact on the possibility of building a family project for low-income families. We work with family dynamics of mutual support and distribution of roles for financial health and employability. The construction of a family dream is both the goal and the means to achieve change. This will allow families to advance from merely surviving to living a much fuller life.

3. Your Solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

We and self-defined families of very low incomes voluntarily undertake a one-year project by means of an integral, non-assistential approach. Families advance towards their dreams through the development of short- and medium-term goals and self-diagnostic abilities to address the issues associated with their economic and financial vulnerabilities. Specifically, we address the essential factors which allow them to identify and understand pertinent factors of unemployment, job loss, or family financial imbalance through a reflective process aimed at modifying behaviors and generating mutual commitments. This process is carried out through personalized family accompaniment and group socio-educational workshops. Families themselves become the protagonists of change, the changemakers: in their immediate environments, the extended family, community, neighborhood, etc., and in their quality of life. We work through four phases: a) family diagnosis (2 months); b) the development of family capital (2 months); c) the intervention process itself (6 months: family transformation in its key issues); and d) consolidation of changes (2 months: looking toward the future).

4. How are you innovating or using unique approaches to solving the problem?

The innovation is recognizing the family, not Rodelillo, as the protagonist of change. We co-build with them a family project approach and vision, defining dreams, prioritizing goals, building budgets and assigning tasks and responsibilities within the family. Priscila y Jorge, padres de 3 hijos. Acudieron a Rodelillo por su alto nivel de deudas. Habían accedido a casa propia con deuda bancaria, pero estaba impaga. Una trabajadora social y un ingeniero comercial les ayudaron a definir sueños y prioridades. La familia decidió volver a empezar. Jorge se hizo conductor de Uber, y Priscila creó dos emprendimientos. Después de 10 meses de intervención, están pagando deudas, tienen plan de emprendimiento, y cuentan con un presupuesto familiar.

5. Employability: how is your organization or project teaching people to develop the skills that they need to survive in the future job market?

In the program each family lives an integral process of formation, decoding of negative mandates and installation of new family knowledge. Challenges and needs are co-diagnosed in employability and finances, access to housing, health, education and family relationships, and tasks and responsibilities are defined under the eaves of a family project oriented towards transformation and a better quality of life. Through group workshops, the construction of support networks and knowledge sharing is promoted, which leads to empowerment and installs an alert attitude to access opportunities, from the use of the internet and job applications, to entering a position of work required. Some of the training topics are family and employment; first interview, CV preparation; what employers look for and what I offer; in what to train me; and values such as honesty and fulfillment of duty.

5a. Please describe which future-oriented skills your organization is focused on fostering and how you have measured / plan to measure progress

In the Rodelillo Model we work on: a constantly alert attitude towards new opportunities, capitalizing on integrating and participating in support networks, speedy responses, confirmation of availability, effective communication, a permanent positive, “yes” attitude, the readiness to take on challenges, and social urgency ethics. The process is measured qualitatively with each family together with the head social worker. In addition, families record self-assessments in the family book. At an aggregated level, progress in adults´employability is observed and measured through a panel survey.

6. Financial capability: how is your organization or project creating innovative solutions that arm people with ability to optimize their current and future financial health

We progress from individual financial education to family financial education, promoting change within the family, strengthening its resources for healthy financial behavior, and motivating all its members towards the same goal and dreams. Families are empowered to have the necessary financial tools to optimize their economic situation and to order their financial behavior. We use special instruments in both group and family intervention: (a) Family Project Book (where family capital, family dreams and goals are developed and established); (b) Family Budget Booklet (where total monthly income of the family group and all monthly expenses, even the smallest ones, are registered); and (c) modules of group workshops oriented to financial education in the areas described in the following section.

6a. Please describe what aspect of financial capability your organization is focused on fostering and how you have measured / plan to measure progress.

Financial capabilities involve various considerations. We work on family capital formation, self-diagnosis, prioritization of economic needs, and evaluation of goals in both increasing income and the family´s overall financial health. Achieving these goals depends on living within the family budget, managing debt reduction and credit ratings, capacity for saving, clarity concerning both income and expenses, and a growing knowledge of the banking system. We also apply a panel survey with somewhat different indicators of families´ financial condition.

7. Marketplace: Who else is addressing the same problem? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

A review of other approaches are focused on employability, financial health, and reducing indebtedness. Rodelillo´s approach is more wholistic and integral, concerned also with families´: Life Projects, Family Relationships and Dynamics, Housing and Habitability, Educative Processes, and Preventive Health and Home Security---all these in addition to Employability and Financial Health. We regard Employability and Financial Capacity as basic concomitants to a family´s integrity as the principal economic unit in society.

8. Impact: How has your project made a difference so far?

Osvaldo, construction worker and Sonia, housekeeper, married with three children, joined Rodelillo with needs, desire and dreams. Their family capital is love. In 1992, Osvaldo had an accident and remained with signatures in Tribunal. Through tenacity, they took care of their jobs, organized their finances, and bought a home. They created a plan to educate their kids. Osvaldito is a Mining Engineer; Pablo, Computer Engineer; and Leonardo, Construction Engineer. Osvaldo and Sonia are exemplars of family entrepreneurship. Numerical impacts can be gauged by a project with 80 families in Coquimbo, Chile, in 2018-2019. On average, they increased their income from US$600 to US$670, with 58% of families increasing their score on the administration scale of family budget. With this, the percent of families which managed to cover their expenses at the end of the month increased from 51 to 79%.

9. Financial Sustainability Plan. Can you tell us about you plan to fund your project and how that plan will be sustainable in the short, medium, and long term?

The funding strategy depends on different sources: a) in vulnerable schools we work with economic sponsorship by another school or parish through resources that finance all or part of the project, and if necessary, we apply to state or private funding sources; b) in companies the project is financed in its entirety by the company, benefited with a 10% surcharge aimed at financing other social projects and the sustainability of Rodelillo; c) in territories, we rely on state or private funding sources. In recent times, we have managed to focus on the most essential areas, reduced program costs, and/or incorporated volunteer professionals, without affecting the quality of the intervention, thus giving sustainability to the interventions.

10. Team

We are composed of the Executive Dir, a Board of Directors, an administ leader, and a project evaluation manager. For each project there is a part-time leader, a full-time social worker, a part-time psychologist and a part time financial counselor for the families. Additionally, each project is guided by a social commission ad honorem, composed of representatives of Rodelillo, the institution(s) financing the Project, and the organization or people benefited. This is a easily scalable strustruct

Help Us Support Diversity! Are you a member of an under-served , under-represented, or marginalized group in your country of residence? (yes/no) (this question is optional – if you choose to fill it out, the response will not be shared with your fellow contestants)

  • Ethnic group
  • Socioeconomic class
  • Status as a migrant

If you selected “yes” to any of the categories above, please explain how being a member of this group has impacted you and your work?

This Representative´s personal status is that of pertaining to the Chilean indigenous ethnic tribe Mapuche; of extreme poverty when at age 14 my mother died suddenly and my Mapuche father disappeared, leaving me doubly-orphaned, pennyless and homeless, with two younger siblings; and of being married to an immigrant. These conditions have allowed me to feel very close to families and to understand their reality of scarcity and discrimination. These categories are my power and the basis of my soc

How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Participated in previous Ashoka challenges  

Attachments (1)


Join the conversation:

Photo of José  Domingo Navarro

Gov has taken Rodelillo as an example of social polices that actually work


The testimonials are very inspiring, and you can see they have a profesional team


That is what poor families need!

Photo of Blanca de Castro

Very interesting proyect. Real impact to poor families.

Photo of Fernando Besser Mahuzier

Excelente y sorprendentemente novedoso cómo se puede ayudar tanto a personas tan pobres, aumentando su autoestima y mirando desde esta nueva ERA digital, ecológica y colaborativa

Photo of Blanca Larraín

It seems like a great project that should be accomplished! This would be an amazing opportunity for all those families to have a good lifestyle. I think we should all help make this happen

Photo of Ignacio larrain

It is very powerfull program to impact poor familias.

Photo of Macarena Currin

Thank you for this oportunitity to applay with our Rodelillo Model for families entrepreneur.