Join WOCCU’s Cooperative Learning Tour to Ecuador and Reconnect with the Credit Union Difference

April 30, 2007

Madison, WI—Credit union leaders may still sign up for World Council of Credit Unions’ (WOCCU) pilot Cooperative Learning Tour to Quito, Ecuador, June 10-17, 2007. This exciting new program will enable credit union leaders to reconnect with the credit union difference by working in a developing credit union system in the Andean mountains of Ecuador.

“I hope to bring back a better appreciation of how credit unions can help all people in different types of economic environments,” explained Joe Thomas, CEO of Fairfax Community Credit Union and one of the credit union leaders signed up for WOCCU’s first Cooperative Learning Tour.

“My personal agenda is to return to the roots of credit union development,” Thomas continued. “When I attend a World Council event, I recharge my batteries and reconnect with what the movement is all about. It takes me beyond the daily operations aspect. We sometimes take for granted the profound influence credit unions can have on people’s financial independence.”

The one-week intensive experience offers a personalized tour of World Council's program in Ecuador and allows participants to better understand the nuts and bolts of credit union development work. Participants will also visit credit unions and exchange ideas on strategies for growing membership, volunteerism and serving low-income populations.

Individual exchanges with Ecuadorian credit union members will remind tour participants of the major impact the availability of affordable financial services can have on members and their families, whether in Ecuador or in the United States.

The Cooperative Learning Tour is a unique offering and will be limited to only 15 participants per group, allowing each person to directly engage in all activities.

The cost of the tour is $1,990 single or $1,790 per person for double occupancy. For more information, visit the World Council of Credit Unions website at or contact Valerie Breunig, Worldwide Foundation manager, vbreunig@woccu.o 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 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

Organization: World Council of Credit Unions
Phone: (608) 395-2000