Woccu looks to next three years of its USAID-backed inclusion programme

The Economic Inclusion Project has supported over 100,000 Venezuelan migrants since 2020

Representatives of over 200 public and private sector organisations met in Peru and Ecuador last month to discuss the World Council of Credit Unions (Woccu)’s USAID-funded Economic Inclusion Project (EIP).

The project was launched in June 2020 to support Venezuelan migrants and their host communities in Peru and Ecuador by offering financial services to 100,000 people.

During the EIP’s first phase, 109,679 individuals obtained formal financial services, 15,120 individuals received financial education and literacy training, 12,278 Venezuelan migrants and locals accessed entrepreneurship or employment opportunities, and 2,037 Venezuelans received support for revalidating their diplomas, or professional or technical degree certifications.

One participant, Daniel Bracho told the meeting: “I thought I knew it all, but USAID and Woccu opened up a way of seeing life and putting things in order to achieve what we have today.”

Dr Astrid Dunn, who took part in the project in Peru, shared how she was helped to recertify her professional qualifications.

Related: Woccu’s social inclusion project in Peru supports newly settled Venezuelans

“I was able to show my children that, with honesty and effort, things can be achieved,” she said.

The events also hosted a networking space where EIP entrepreneurs could exhibit and sell their products.

The project is being renewed for a further three years, with a focus on climate change and youth engagement.

EIP chief of party Oscar Guzmán thanked the work of over 50 project partners and supporters in both countries.

“Although EIP has had great achievements, including allowing more than 109,000 people to access financial services and benefiting more than 12,000 with entrepreneurship and employment opportunities, the new phase seeks to achieve the sustainability of the methodologies in a greater scope of intervention, which is more challenging,” he said.