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Worldwide Foundation for Credit Unions (WFCU) is providing a $30,100 grant to Tarim Kredi (Agricultural Credit Cooperatives of Turkey) through the Turkish Cooperative Earthquake Relief Fund to purchase over 40 air conditioners that will allow for safer conditions for 126 workers and 20,489 members impacted by the devastating February 6 earthquakes.
After the 7.5 and 7.8 magnitude earthquakes struck southern Turkey, WFCU, in partnership with World Council of Credit Unions, launched its Turkish Cooperative Earthquake Relief Fund in February and provided ten portable office units to continue operations and house employees in need by April.
Not only did the $41,000 grant allow for daily operations to continue, the seven cooperatives that received them helped their member farmers continue agricultural production and contribute to the food security of the devastated region.
“If it were not for the portable office, we could not continue our operations as our building was out-of-use there, which provides 50% of our yearly sales”, said Ms Figen Canbay Çiğdem, representative of Akçadağ Agricultural Credit Cooperative in Malatya.
As temperatures in Turkey drastically change, the Agricultural Credit Cooperatives of Turkey needed a way to safely maintain temperatures for the new office units that doubled as housing.
WFCU’s $30,100 grant to procure over 40 air conditioners will provide safer working and living environments for 126 personnel working for 30 cooperatives, 1 service bureau and 1 regional union located in 7 earthquake-affected provinces. The air conditioners will also provide relief for their 20,489 farmer members regularly visiting these office spaces for financial services.
“On behalf of Tarım Kredi and my country, I would like to thank WFCU, WOCCU and the credit union community for the support they have shown since the first week of the disaster. We have been collaborating with WFCU to mitigate the impacts of the earthquakes . . . and to create a safe environment for our staff,” said Okan Ateş, Deputy Director General of the Central Union of Agricultural Credit Cooperatives of Turkey.With 1,617 cooperatives serving 800,000 members, Agricultural Credit Cooperatives of Turkey is not only the country’s leading agricultural credit cooperative but the largest agricultural organization in Turkey.