In a recent fintech event at Denver, earlier this month, World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU), the Madison, Wisconsin-based global trade association and development agency for credit unions, invited a dozen of executives from Peru’s Cooperativa de Ahorro y Credito Santo Cristo de Bagazan and El Salvador’s Federation of Savings and Loan Cooperative Associations (FEDECACES) to participate in the three-day Pasantia Técnica (Technical Internship) program.
The internship program also saw participation from the representatives of the Mountain West Credit Union Association (MWCUA), along with three of its member institutions – On Tap Credit Union, Columbine Federal Credit Union, and Denver Community Credit Union – and CULedger, who all engaged in discussions on ways in which cooperatives have benefitted from mix of technology and personalized service.
“American credit unions have a lot to share about their experiences with digital financial services, but they also have a lot they can learn from financial cooperatives in Latin America, which have achieved great success in strengthening outreach with their members and communities,” states Thomas Belekevich, World Council Program Manager for member services. “In order to grow membership, credit unions in places like Peru and El Salvador are expanding digital services to reach new members in areas where physical branch locations don’t exist. The challenge now is in expanding collaborative models for helping reduce the cost of this digitization process.”
Discussing in details, the program explored the sustainability and cost benefits that come associated with collaboration regarding technology. Venturing deeper, the program also explored the tools to increase operational efficiencies and improve digital access to financial services, along with ways to benefit members by fostering them with enhanced financial care that comprises the right mix of technology and financial education.