CUNA, WOCCU call for support for international crisis relief efforts

October 18, 2023

CUNA and the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) wrote to House and Senate appropriations subcommittees this week in anticipation of supplemental funding legislation being prepared by Congress to aid Ukraine and Israel.

“As Congress moves forward with consideration of additional funding for Ukraine and Israel, it is important to recognize the important history that credit unions have played in responding to disaster and crisis situations,” the letter reads. “It should be noted that this is not a political position. Credit unions are not an arm of any government, but instead they embrace their philosophy of “people helping people.”

The organizations ask for $30 million to expand the Credit for Agriculture Producers’ (CAP) Technical Assistance Project to support Ukrainian credit unions; and $50 million to support the efforts of the countries surrounding Ukraine to enhance local economic stability and growth.

The letter also notes Israel has a “nascent” cooperative finance movement with a credit union founded in 2012 that is “positioned to play an important role in addressing the needs of its communities during this crisis.”

“WOCCU urges $10 million in funding to sustainably address the needs of Palestinians displaced during this conflict through an integrated programming of relief, housing support, entrepreneurship, employment, and financial inclusion, through existing financial services providers and cooperative institutions,” the letter reads.