Nassau, Bahamas-At this year's Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Nassau, Bahamas, World Council of Credit Unions, Inc. (WOCCU) welcomed more than 200 attendees of the conference to see the World Council's Board of Directors and Delegates prepare for the coming year.
Arthur Arnold, WOCCU president and CEO reported on the achievements for World Council in 2003, giving an overview of the three different missions: advocacy, platform and development. He commented on highlights in each area, referring to the 2003 Annual Report and Statistical Report recently released.
Arnold explained the change in the bylaws made by the WOCCU General Assembly to become even more inclusive, allowing smaller national associations and regional confederations to become members of WOCCU. "We continue to grow in our activities. I thank the Board of Directors and General Assembly delegates for their guidance and support and the WOCCU staff, in Madison, Washington, DC and our field projects for their commitment and dedication to make our work a success," shared Arnold.
L.R. (Bobby) McVeigh explained and gave the Board Chairman's report noting that WOCCU continues to move forward with good governance principles. Based on a 2003 Strategic Planning Forum, the board concluded that governance is a priority item and to this end have added a 4th mission to WOCCU. World Council anticipates issuing guidelines for good governance for the end of fourth quarter of 2004.
Since the 2003 AGM in Brisbane, Australia, three new member countries have been announced, Rwanda, Brazil, and, most recently, Costa Rica. The WOCCU Board approved, as of last week, the membership of Costa Rica's FEDEAC. Síncrito Cifuentes accepted the WOCCU membership flag on behalf of FEDEAC.
During the meeting, McVeigh acknowledged the work of Marcel Chorel, both as a delegate and board member of WOCCU. Chorel has made an effective contribution to the committees, specifically WYCUP, and through his work to initiate a similar program in the Canadian system. McVeigh honored Chorel with a plaque of recognition. Chorel will now be leaving the board.
Chorel said, "Serving on the WOCCU board has been both an honor and privilege. There have been many tremendous strides in furthering credit union development in the world. The most rewarding aspect has been being nominated to serve on the WYCUP committee and the friendships that have developed with the world credit union committee."
Jim McMahon from Ireland, who was unable to attend due to illness, will also be leaving the WOCCU Board this year. A plaque presentation in his honor will be made at a later date.
The next Annual General Meeting will be held in Rome, Italy July 26, 2005.
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, 57,000 credit unions in 103 countries serve 208 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at www.woccu.org.