April 18, 2022
MADISON, Wis.—World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) President and CEO Elissa McCarter LaBorde is visiting Poland this week to meet with Ukrainian and Polish credit union leaders about the short- and long-term challenges they face due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Leaders of the WOCCU Credit for Agriculture Producers (CAP) Project, a USAID-funded activity focused on strengthening Ukraine’s credit unions and expanding access to agricultural lending, will join McCarter LaBorde for meetings with executives from a CAP partner credit union based in western Ukraine.
McCarter LaBorde will also meet with representatives of Kasa Stefczyka, the largest credit union in Poland, which has begun enrolling Ukrainian refugees as members by offering specialized products, services and financial education programs to them.
She will also meet with Rafal Matusiak, Chair of the WOCCU Board of Directors and CEO of the National Association of Cooperative Savings and Credit Unions (NACSCU), WOCCU’s direct member credit union association in Poland. Along with providing humanitarian assistance to Ukrainian refugees since they started arriving in Poland in late February, NACSCU has also done extensive work to provide technical assistance and education to credit unions in Ukraine that partner with the WOCCU CAP Project.
“WOCCU recognizes the credit unions we work with in Ukraine are facing mounting challenges caused by the Russian invasion. We want to know how we can help both today and in the coming months and years,” said McCarter LaBorde. “We also want to make sure that any solutions we develop are done in coordination with our member credit union associations in neighboring countries like Poland, which are already doing so much to help in this time of need.”
World Council of Credit Unions is the global trade association and development platform 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 90 countries. Worldwide, 86,451 credit unions in 118 countries serve 375 million people. Learn more about World Council’s impact around the world at www.woccu.org.