The World Council of Credit Unions has a simple mission: to improve lives through credit unions.
Credit unions give people in developing communities the opportunity to expand their horizons through microfinance, smart money practices and local businesses. The World Council of Credit Unions works to increase the number of credit unions around the world to give everyone their best chance at a healthy, prosperous life.
A credit union is defined as a member-owned and not-for-profit financial institution. This institution provides financial services, such as savings and credit accounts, to their members, although their formal name changes based on their location and people they serve. Credit unions serve their members based on a common linkage, like religion or occupation. Increasing the population of credit unions worldwide can help end poverty epidemics while improving the economic situations of countries.
The World Council of Credit Unions is a nonprofit organization that has been spreading the importance of credit unions worldwide since 2006. The international credit union system has more than doubled since its inauguration and continues to serve more than 200 million members to this day. The organization has credit unions in 105 countries as of 2014, including nations in Latin America, Asia and Africa.
Financial inclusion programs assist credit unions and their members in areas affected by serious conflict, helping them during and after the conflict has struck a country. These programs focus on bringing innovative technology solutions and providing resources to those in need. In total, the World Council of Credit Unions has 275 long-term and short-term programs that assist credit unions in more than 70 countries.
In 2014, the organization put forth its efforts to the project Vision 2020. Vision 2020 is a global membership growth project initiated by the World Council of Credit Unions to expand credit union services to at least 50 million new people by the year 2020. It is expected to solve the issue of having more than two billion people remain without banking services, with the majority comprising of women, young adults and those in extreme poverty.
The organization hopes to eventually raise the number of credit union members from 208 million to 260 million worldwide.
– Julia Hettiger