WOCCU & CUNA Host U.S. Congressional Delegtion

International Credit Union Development Highlighted

March 29, 2005

LEON, Mexico – Six Congressional staff members joined representatives from the World Council of Credit Unions, Inc. (WOCCU), the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), and the Arizona, California and Texas credit union leagues Monday, kicking off the first U.S. Congressional international credit union development fact- finding tour.

WOCCU Senior Manager for Latin America and the Caribbean Mark Cifuentes met the participants here this afternoon. For Cifuentes, the week- long tour highlighting three WOCCU projects is an opportunity to demonstrate WOCCU methodology for strengthening credit unions and increasing the scope and depth of their outreach. "There really is no substitute for seeing first-hand what these credit unions mean for the people in their communities," says Cifuentes.

CUNA Manager of Legislative Affairs Katie Herberger and WOCCU Governmental Affairs Manager Molly Schar spent the day traveling with most of the Congressional staffers from Washington, D.C. After a briefing, the group traveled to nearby Guanajuato for dinner in the historic town with officials of Caja Popular Mexicana (CPM), Mexico's largest credit union.

Participants will tour CPM headquarters Tuesday before proceeding to a rural branch office to visit with credit union members.

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

Phone: (608) 395-2000