Mario Santo Domingo, a successful entrepreneur in the city of Barranquilla, established his foundation in 1960. Originally named La Fundación Barranquilla, the foundation supported educational institutions and other organizations dedicated to philanthropic work. A change came in 1989, when the board of directors voted to rename the organization and refocus efforts. Currently, the foundation's goals include improving living conditions for destitute families, retraining workers, building homes for the poor and supporting microenterprise development with loans and business training.
Accion has licensed Fundación Mario Santo Domingo to offer Accion’s ‘Dialogue on Business‘ – a business training program for microentrepreneurs. Accion also played an integral role in the development of Fundación Mario Santo Domingo’s current credit methodology: solidarity group lending. This model has become the base for Fundación Mario Santo Domingo’s microfinance program, thus, the majority of Fundación Mario Santo Domingo borrowers are members of solidarity groups.
In 2005, Accion and Fundación Mario Santo Domingo jointly established Centro de Formación Empresarial (CFE), an official microenterprise training center in Bogota. This center offers a full spectrum of training services to the Colombian microenterprise community through Accion's ‘Dialogue on Business.’