WOCCU Announces First Cooperative Learning Tour Program to Ecuador

March 29, 2007

Phone: (608) 395-2000

View of the equator

Madison, WI—Demonstrating the importance of cooperative philosophy and the impact of credit union development is a goal for World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU). To this end, WOCCU will host its first Cooperative Learning Tour, June 10-17, in Ecuador. This new type of program is designed for credit union leaders to work in a developing credit union system, learn about successful cooperative education programs and spend time learning about Ecuador.

During the one-week intensive experience participants will visit credit unions and exchange ideas on growing membership, volunteerism and serving low-income populations.

Rural Ecuador credit union members learn about how to run a small business at a educational program.

"Credit union CEOs tell us retaining talent within the credit union system is a big concern," says WOCCU director Catherine Roberts, and president and CEO of Research Federal Credit Union. "The Cooperative Learning Tour program offers CEOs a way to challenge their rising star employees to learn how credit unions in different countries address the same problems they face, while giving them an intense international development experience."

"I have visited this project and have personally seen some of the rural credit unions strengthened by World Council's project. I saw people in great need and credit unions offering programs and services to meet those needs," explained Roberts. "After the trip I have an even clearer vision of how I can better serve the underserved in my credit union's market and how cooperative philosophy makes a difference in this world."

The Cooperative Learning Tour will be limited to only 15 participants, to allow each person to engage directly in all activities.

The trip cost is $1,990 for single or $1,790 for double occupancy. For more information, visit the World Council website at or contact Valerie Breunig, WOCCU Worldwide Foundation funds manager at 608-231-7353 or vbreunig@woccu.o rg.

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