Credit Unions Help Credit Unions through World Council and CCA-Sponsored Uganda Project
A credit union member visits Lwamujungu SACCO, 21 kilometers east of Kabale in southern Uganda.
Madison, WI—World Council of Credit
Unions, Inc. (WOCCU) and the Canadian Co-
operative Association (CCA) have launched a
novel partnership to strengthen the credit union
movement in Uganda.
The effort is unique for two reasons. While
two organizations often coordinate their
development efforts and communicate frequently,
this is the first joint project initiated in
more than 20 years. Furthermore, the project
will be funded entirely from money raised within
the credit union system. Without the need to
seek funds and report to governments or other
external donors, CCA, World Council and the
Uganda Co-operative Savings and Credit Union,
Ltd. (UCSCU) will have greater scope for
flexibility and creativity throughout their
"The SACCO Voluntary Supervision Project is
fully funded by credit union and individual
contributions to the Worldwide Foundation for
Credit Unions and the Co-operative Development
Foundation of Canada," announced Pete Crear,
World Council CEO. "The realization of this
project makes a strong statement about the reach
and impact credit unions and individuals can
make when we pull together for the sake of
developing young credit union movements."
In Uganda, Savings and Credit Co-operatives
(SACCOs) have faced a daunting array of
obstacles, including corruption, conflict,
health pandemics and economic disparity. There
is significant poverty in Uganda—about one-
third of the country's estimated 28 million
people live in abject poverty, on less than one
dollar per day. Many of those people could
benefit dramatically from the services that
credit unions offer, but there are unique
challenges in developing credit unions to serve
people at this level of poverty.
World Council and CCA will collaborate with
UCSCU to help ten Ugandan SACCOs, with a
combined membership of over 17,000, to improve
their technical capacity, financial stability
and political independence. Under the guidance
and supervision of UCSCU, the ten SACCOS will
work to build safe and sound institutions. By
agreeing to UCSCU supervision, the SACCOs will
also benefit from the project's branding and
marketing assistance, and members and potential
members will have the security of knowing that
their SACCOs are monitored using international
Both CCA and World Council will conduct
workshops and training for SACCO board members
and employees. The resident CCA representative
will handle in-country supervision of the
project, and UCSCU will set up an independent
department to supervise the participating
SACCOs. The project will also involve training
on advocacy practices and lobbying for
appropriate SACCO legislation.
CCA is the national association for more than
seven million cooperative and credit union
members from 3,000 cooperative organizations.
CCA began collaborating with UCSCU in 1988
through a Women's Revolving Loan Fund project,
which helped women in cooperatives access credit
and management training to run their businesses.
The project was funded by the Canadian
International Development Agency. CCA is
currently working in 22 countries worldwide.
World Council's former Uganda project, funded
the United States Agency for International
Development, strengthened 14 SACCOs in the
central part of the country.
For more information on supporting the SACCO
Voluntary Supervision Project in Uganda, contact
Valerie Breunig, firstname.lastname@example.org
rg or 608-231-7353.
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 more than 290 technical assistance programs in 71 countries. Worldwide, 51,000 credit unions in 100 countries serve 196 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at www.woccu.org.