4 May 2020

Interview with Laurence Lebrun-Renoult, General Manager, CA Val de France

©Philippe Lissac

Launched by the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation and Crédit Agricole SA, Banquiers solidaires [Solidarity Bankers] is a skills volunteer programme that offers Group employees technical assistance assignments with organizations supported by the Foundation. In 2019, the Caisse Régionale Val de France supported a Solidarity Banker assignment in Cambodia. Dominique Rombczyk, a risk analyst with the Regional Bank went to Cambodia on a 10-day “financial management” assignment in September for Cirque Phare (PPSE), a social business in which the Foundation is a shareholder.

– What motivated your Bank to take part in the Solidarity Bankers programme?

When one of our employees took the initiative to apply for a Solidarity Banker assignment, our Bank naturally supported his request and granted him a week of skill-based sponsorship. Dominique Rombczyk was thus able to bring his skills to bear in the financial management of the Cirque Phare (PPSE). PPSE is a Cambodian social business which promotes the social integration and empowerment of young people through the arts and culture. It is a source of pride for us, because this approach is fully in line with our guidance and support values.

– What feedback do you get from this experience?

Solidarity Bankers is one of those programmes that make us more sensitive to the social consequences of our banking activities. It is making a difference for a sustainable vision of finance in both theory and practice. The initiative carried out by our employee enabled us to share and disseminate in our Bank the human qualities of openness and commitment which we promote. In addition to communication at Group level, his experience made headlines in internal communications, for instance. Fur us bankers, knowing how to mobilize our skills in the service of others, opening up and adapting to a different context and to different issues are soft skills that must be part and parcel of our line of business.

– What other actions does your Regional Bank take to promote social inclusion?

Social cohesion in regions is a strategic priority for a Regional Bank such as ours. The Crédit Agricole Foundation – Val De France is pursuing initiatives in favour of local or regional associations endeavouring for the inclusion of young people on the one hand and for intergenerational support on the other. We provide skills-based sponsorship for these associations on a voluntary basis, following the same model as the Solidarity Banker assignments. For example, we are launching a youth training project for which all the expertise of our staff is welcome for support assignments: assistance for financial management, leadership, advice, etc. We also work with young people to support isolated, often elderly persons, which fosters the inter-generational dialogue. This effort as a whole is part of a broader approach aimed at promoting the socio-economic autonomy of populations.

Source: Integrated Report 2019, Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation. Dowload it here