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There are currently 1.7 billion people in the world without access to any form of financial services

This means they have no means to securely save their money, no access to ethical loans, no financial education and as a result, are at risk of becoming indebted to high-interest loans.

Most of these people are living in low-income developing countries, where careful financial management is necessary to support the families and businesses in the communities they reside, to effectively prepare for, respond to and recover from livelihood shocks and stresses. 

Access to basic financial products and services can transform a community. It can unlock opportunities for education, employment, entrepreneurship and can provide a safety net to manage Irish and absorb financial shock in times of crisis.

The Foundation plays an important and key role in educating people and assisting in the development of credit union movements internationally, providing safe and ethical financial solutions for communities and working towards the goal of achieving financial inclusion for all

We’re proud to say that our colleagues, from almost 200 credit unions around the country, contributed over €530,000 to our work in 2019. These generous contributions enabled The Foundation to support 466 credit unions and their 152,000 members in our three partner countries – Ethiopia, Sierra Leone and The Gambia.

Credit Unions Support
Members Included
Irish Credit Unions Who Contributed


the amount raised in 2019 to support the Foundation’s work.


the number of credit unions in developing countries who have benefitted from financial education and support programmes through the Foundation.


credit union members in Ethiopia, The Gambia and Sierra Leone who are benefitting from our expertise. 

UP TO 200

Irish Credit Unions support the Foundation with donations annually.


the amount received from institutional donors such as IFAD and Irish Aid in 2019.


the number of Irish Credit Union staff and volunteers who give their time and support to help others benefit from the expertise and success of the Credit Union Movement in Ireland.

A Special Thank You To

  • Credit unions and their members, for their contributions.
  • Our credit union colleagues who kindly hosted delegations and facilitated study visits and information sharing. 
  • Credit union staff, management and boards of directors who met with The Foundation staff throughout the year.
  • Credit unions that allowed us to make presentations to their members at their AGMs.
  • The various Foundation Chapters that allowed us to make presentations at their respective monthly meetings and events.
  • The Irish League of Credit Unions for bearing staff, fundraising and administrative costs. To the ILCU Board, management and staff, thank you for your continuous support, and for your help on various projects and aspects of our work.
  • CUMA for allowing us to promote our work at their Spring and Autumn conference and for organising a fundraising event in support of our work.
  • The ILCU Foundation advocates and volunteers who worked alongside us to raise awareness at chapter meetings and Credit Union events.
  • The Irish coaches on the Gambia and Sierra Leone Coaching Programmes and their respective credit unions for their support, and for volunteering their time and skills.
  • The volunteers who participated in our CEO Volunteer Programme, Sierra Leone and Governance Volunteer Programme, The Gambia.