Crédit Agricole’s Solidarity bankers in images

Launched in June 2018 at the initiative of the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation and Crédit Agricole S.A., Solidarity bankers is a skills volunteering programme open to all Crédit Agricole Group employees on behalf of microfinance institutions or social impact enterprises supported by the Foundation.

The aim of Solidarity Bankers is twofold: on one hand, it values the skills of Crédit Agricole Group employees who wish to get involved in solidarity projects and, on the other hand, it strengthens the support for microfinance institutions and companies financed by the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation.

Two years after its launch, discover the testimonials and highlights of the missions in Senegal and Cambodia in 3 video clips that present the results of the programme.

First destination: Senegal

The programme’s first mission is emblematic: the mission led by Jonathan Michaud, an agricultural engineer from Crédit Agricole Franche Comté, in Senegal for La Laiterie du Berger. With the support of the Regional Bank, the Solidarity banker left for 2 years to help La Laiterie to structure the dairy industry in Senegal. Today, he is Director of KOSSAM SDE, the Dairy’s subsidiary created as a result of his mission, which contributes to structuring the milk sector in Northern Senegal by providing material resources and training to breeders and developing an innovative model of pilot “mini-farms”. It supports 1,230 local breeders, who have seen their income increase by more than 50% between 2018 and 2019.

Another mission was carried out in Senegal in 2020. Michèle Kouam, IT Project Manager at Crédit Agricole SA, left at the beginning of the year to support the Société Sénégalaise des Filières Alimentaires (SFA). Her mission was to work on digitizing the rice collection of SFA, a company that produces white rice from paddy grown by small farmers in the Senegal River Valley. By enabling access to credit, providing technical support and guaranteeing a fair price, SFA currently supports 3,200 small farmers and promotes the development of an inclusive rice sector in Senegal.

Heading to Cambodia

A final mission completes this record in images: the mission of François Galland, Head of International HR at Crédit Agricole SA, to the microfinance institution Chamroeun. François worked for 2 weeks on Chamroeun’s Human resources strategy. The institution offers financial products and services to more than 33,000 low-income people in Cambodia, who are also supported with a range of training and social support services.

What’s next?

Since the launch of the programme, 20 missions have been launched, 12 of which have been carried out. For the first missions launched in 2020, the selection process has been finalized, but two mission are still to be filled in Morocco and Egypt.

With Solidarity Bankers, the Regional Banks and Crédit Agricole entities in France and abroad are stepping up their actions in favor of inclusive finance and strengthening the human and social projects of the Group/PMT 2022 Strategy.

See the video of the 3 missions

Solidarity Bankers and Plastic Odyssey: missions to be filled in Egypt and Morocco

THE PLASTIC ODYSSEY ADVENTURE

Every minute, 19 metric tons of plastic enter our oceans and 80% of marine pollution comes from coastal towns and cities in the world’s poorest countries. In the face of this global challenge, Plastic Odyssey aims to make recycling plastic waste into a profitable business that creates new jobs.

The project is based on a round-the-world voyage aboard a boat that acts as an ambassador for open-source recycling technologies. The boat will be making stops in emerging countries where these solutions will be used to recycle available waste to help create and grow plastic recycling microbusinesses. The expedition is due to set sail at the end of January 2021.

Crédit Agricole S.A., CA Regional Banks and subsidiaries support the project since 2018 by financing the construction of a prototype boat and the expedition with €1.2 million over 5 years. Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation supports Plastic Odyssey in the development of its business model and the project of structuring a social impact recycling branch during the expedition.

MISSIONS TO BE FILLED IN EGYPT AND MOROCCO

Plastic Odyssey will start its journey through the Mediterranean Sea, and needs to update its knowledge of the plastic waste value chain and to identify partnerships opportunities with social entrepreneurs. In the framework of the Solidarity Bankers Programme, Crédit Agricole SA and Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation, publish two missions to support Plastic Odyssey’s development. The missions are open only to Crédit Agricole employees based in Egypt and Morocco.

The Solidarity Bankers’ objectives will be to identify the key actors of the plastic recycling value chain in Egypt and Morocco, to analyze the business model of targeted social enterprises and their success factors and to identify development opportunities for Plastic Odyssey.

The duration of each mission is one day per week for sixteen weeks, which can be during the Solidarity bankers’ working time (skill-based sponsorship by the Solidarity bankers’ employers) and/or holidays (volunteering). The missions can be done in pairs or by a team of expert of Crédit Agricole based in Egypt and Morocco. The mission in Egypt will take place from the last quarter 2020 and the mission in Morocco in the first quarter 2021.

APPLY TO THE MISSION IN EGYPT
APPLY TO THE MISSION IN MOROCCO

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(1) Alpes Provence, Aquitaine, Atlantique Vendée, Charente-Maritime Deux-Sèvres, Finistère, Nord de France, Normandie-Seine and Provence Côte d’Azur
(2) CA Assurances, CACEIS, Crédit Agricole CIB, CA Immobilier, BforBank, CAMCA Mutuelle, Crédit Agricole Poland and Crédit Agricole Italy

RENACA, finalist for European Microfinance Award 2020

In the Covid-19 pandemic, encouraging savings activity is critical in providing resilience to vulnerable people. Savings allows, among other things, consumption smoothing in the face of income volatility, minimises the impact of financial and other shocks, encourages long term planning and offers opportunities for productive investment.

The European Microfinance Award 2020 (EMA 2020) will reward with a €100,000 prize the organization that better encourages effective and inclusive savings. Among 70 applications from 37 countries, three finalists were announced: Buusaa Gonofaa Microfinance, Muktinath Bikas Bank and RENACA, partner of Grameen Credit Agricole Foundation. These organisations offer savings products and services based on a genuine understanding of clients’ needs and behaviour, reach under-served populations, and ensure that the savings are accessible, affordable and useful.

RENACA is a union of cooperatives in Benin supported by the Foundation since 2013, which targets low income and vulnerable populations  in rural areas. RENACA offers a wide range of saving products (‘tontine’ doorstep models, term deposits and demand deposits) and promotes community savings and credit groups. Its savings offer is supported by a mobile application and the use of tablets, for secure and trustworthy client transactions. RENACA also provides financial education and other non-financial services.

After the announcement of the finalists, the Luxembourg Minister for Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Affairs, Mr. Franz Fayot, said: “The extraordinary response to this year’s Award is strong evidence of the impressive reputation it has gained for rigour and quality as well as for the exposure benefits that those who do well in the process can reap. The diverse applications highlight not only how important responsible inclusive financial services are during crises, but also how especially savings can strengthen resilience of vulnerable communities”.

The winner will be chosen by a High Jury and announced on November 19th at an online ceremony during EMW 2020.
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More information on e-MFP

New programme to strengthen smallholder households

SSNUP (Smallholder Safety Net Upscaling Programme)

In collaboration with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and the Luxembourg Directorate for Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Action, ADA is launching a new program to support small farmers in Africa, Latin America and Asia. SSNUP (Smallholder Safety Net Upscaling Programme) will run for ten years with a budget of 55 million euros.

The program will draw on the technical assistance expertise of impact investment funds to design, test and develop financial and non-financial solutions for the mitigation and transfer of agricultural risks of different actors in value chains.

A partnership to strengthen the technical assistance offer

Based on its experience in the management of technical assistance programs, the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation was selected as one of the impact investors in charge of setting up the SSNUP.

The Foundation will thus coordinate technical assistance missions for the organizations it supports – microfinance institutions and social enterprises – on various themes such as the development of new financial and non-financial products/services for small producers, agricultural microinsurance and the digitalization of operations. The SSNUP expands the Foundation’s offer of technical assistance and represents a tremendous opportunity to strengthen its impact on the organizations it supports in Africa and Asia and on the small producers supported by its organizations in the field.

In addition to the Foundation, four impact investors have joined SSNUP: Incofin, Oikocredit, responsAbility and Symbiotics. Other actors will be invited to join the program as it develops.

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For more information: ADA.

Event: Lidia, entrepreneur supported by Solidarity Cents

SOLIDARITY CENTS

Launched in 2018 by the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation, Crédit Agricole SA and CA Centre-est, Solidarity Cents aims to finance entrepreneurial projects by mobilizing Crédit Agricole employees, who are invited to make a donation of 50 cents when they pay for their meals in the restaurants of Crédit Agricole Campuses.

Entrepreneurs du Monde, NGO financed also by Fondation Crédit Agricole Solidarité et Développement, has been the beneficiary of the operation since the first edition. The NGO has already received €15,651 to strengthen the ICI (Incubation, Creation, Inclusion) programme, which supports entrepreneurship projects for refugees, single parents and homeless people in Lyon. In 2 years, more than 100 people have been guided to structure their entrepreneurial projects.

2020 will be the 3rd and final year of support for Entrepreneurs du Monde, which will receive an additional €11,000 in subsidies.

MEETING LIDIA

To close the 3rd edition of Solidarity Cents, the Foundation and Crédit Agricole welcome Lidia, an Italian entrepreneur supported through the operation, to CA Campus in Montrouge on October 29th, 2020.

Arrived in France 12 years ago, Lidia is an Italian entrepreneur, mother of 3 children and beneficiary of the RSA. Thanks to the support of Entrepreneurs du Monde through ICI programme, she was able to create her own catering service. The next step: bringing an old grocery store to life in Lyon, in a street steeped in history with Italy.

Come to share with Lidia and taste her culinary specialties!

Event reserved exclusively for employees of the Crédit Agricole Group.
To register, contact carolina.viguet@credit-agricole-sa.fr

The Foundation grants a first loan to MLF Zambia

The Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation pursues its investments in Subsaharan Africa and has just granted a first loan in local currency equivalent to € 250.000 to the Zambian microfinance institution MicroLoan Foundation Zambia (MLF-Zambia), over a of three-year period. This loan has been granted within the framework of the African Facility programme which aims at reinforcing smal microfinance institutions.

MLF Zambia is a microfinance institution that was established in 2008. Its activities are overseen by the Microloan Foundation which has its headquarters in the UK. MLF-Z’s main activity is providing low-income women living in predominantly rural areas of Eastern, Southern and Central Provinces of Zambia with short-term loans of between 4-6 months for productive purposes. The institution lends exclusively to women.

With this loan, the Foundation now has an outstanding amount of € 36.4 million in the sub-Saharan African region, or 38% of the outstanding amount monitored by the Foundation.

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Created in 2008, under the joint leadership of Crédit Agricole SA and Professor Yunus, 2006 Nobel Peace Prize winner and founder of Grameen Bank, the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation is a cross-business actor which contributes to the fight against poverty through financial inclusion and social impact entrepreneurship. Investor, lender, technical assistance coordinator and Fund advisor, the Foundation supports microfinance institutions and social enterprises in 40 countries.

For more information on the organizations supported by the Foundation, click here.