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Beyond Brick and Mortar: Global Credit Union Movement Brings Relief to Nepal

US$175,000 raised to support credit union rebuilding and community rehabilitation

September 30, 2015

Contact: Calyn Ostrowski
Organization: World Council of Credit Unions
E-mail: costrowski@woccu.org
Phone: 608-395-2056
 

After Nepal's earthquake in April, some damaged SACCOs have relocated their branches, including Hamro Jankalyan SACCO pictured above.

MADISON, Wis. — Five months after Nepal's worst earthquake in 80 years, the World Council of Credit Unions, CUNA Mutual Group (CMG), Irish League of Credit Unions Foundation (ILCUF) and Asia Confederation of Credit Unions (ACCU) have partnered to rehabilitate and renovate over 300 Nepalese credit unions, or SACCOs, and their branches.

Through generous contributions by individuals and credit unions, World Council's Worldwide Foundation for Credit Unions, CMG, ILCUF and ACCU provided the Nepal Federation of Savings and Credit Cooperative Unions (NEFSCUN) with a $US175,000 grant to repair building structures, replace equipment and train management officers in disaster recovery.

"Thanks to CMG, ILCUF, ACCU and our international supporters, 216,000 Nepalese credit union members will regain access to financial services and hope for a better future," said Brian Branch, World Council president and CEO. 

Local SACCOs continue to serve members during building reconstruction.

Beyond branch reconstruction, rehabilitation efforts will include psychological counseling services to NEFSCUN staff and members. SACCOs will also offer financial literacy training and assist members in their plans for rebuilding livelihoods. 

Loss of property, livelihoods and lives among NEFSCUN membership has been devastating. Thousands of members, who rely solely on livestock and agriculture, have witnessed the collapse of $US50M in crops, machinery and cattle. At the same time, members continue to mourn lost family, as NEFSCUN estimates 655 members died from the earthquake.


Technical data recovery is a key part of the SACCO rehabilitation process. 

"NEFSCUN thanks all the people who gave money through WOCCU, ACCU, CMG and ILCUF for their support to help us renovate our credit unions in Nepal," said Shivajee Sapkota, NEFSCUN CEO. "This support has been instrumental in rehabilitating credit unions temporarily closed due to the earthquake Nepal suffered in April."

In the past four years, the Worldwide Foundation has delivered over $US2 million in aid to credit union organizations affected by natural disasters in Chile, Haiti, El Salvador, and most recently, Malawi and the Philippines.


Hamro Jankalyan SACCO staff express satisfaction with their branch relocation. 

To support the global credit union movement, contributions can be made via check, credit card or wire. Send to:

Worldwide Foundation for Credit Unions, Inc.
5710 Mineral Point Road
Madison, WI 53705, USA  

Donations to "Nepal Earthquake Relief Efforts" can be made online at www.woccu.org/give. For additional information, contact the Worldwide Foundation for Credit Unions at +1-608-395-2000 or foundation@woccu.org.

 



World Council of Credit Unions is the global trade association and development agency for credit unions. World Council promotes the sustainable development of credit unions and other financial cooperatives around the world to empower people through access to high quality and affordable financial services. World Council advocates on behalf of the global credit union system before international organizations and works with national governments to improve legislation and regulation. Its technical assistance programs introduce new tools and technologies to strengthen credit unions' financial performance and increase their outreach.

World Council has implemented 300+ technical assistance programs in 89 countries. Worldwide, 68,882 credit unions in 109 countries serve 235 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at www.woccu.org.


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