By Alison Darcy, Project Officer CUFA and
Luse Tamani, OCCUL Secretariat Officer
This year’s Global Women’s Leadership Forum, held at the recent World Credit Union Conference was the largest to date. More than 125 women credit union leaders from 24 countries gathered on the Gold Coast for the 2014 Leadership Forum, where credit union women connected with fellow leaders from credit union movements all over the world and engaged in professional and personal development.
“The network has grown exponentially in the last two years, reaching over 700 members since inception. The collaboration and mutual support of women in the Network is a true demonstration of cooperativism. We’re making a difference in each other’s lives, and it’s exciting to see what we’re accomplishing together and around the world” explains World Council’s Business Manager and Global Women’s Leadership Network organiser, Nicole Bice.
CUFA is represented in the network by Luse Tamani. Since joining CUFA in 2010 Luse has been a strong voice for women’s empowerment and leadership within the Pacific credit union movement, recently promoted as Secretariat of the Oceania Confederation of Credit Union Leagues. In July, she joined Barbara Gascoigne from Jamaica’s JTA Co-op Credit Union and COBA’s then CEO, Louise Petschler to represent the Pacific credit unions and CUFA on the forum’s panel.
With women holding just 2% of CEO positions within the financial sector, this year’s panel discussion provided an opportunity for panelists to share insights and experiences on different leadership challenges faced by women around the world, how to best manage these challenges and how to best ensure women’s voices are heard.
“It was such a privilege to be part of the panel”, explains Luse. “I’m so honoured to be part of such a strong and collaborative network, without a doubt the network is impacting and positively influencing the lives of credit union women globally, bringing about changes for a better today and a beautiful tomorrow.”
Luse explains that while many of the views shared had certain parallels she advocated quite strongly that woman could not work in isolation and for best results and effective outcomes; needed to engage the collaboration and solidarity of like-minded men to help further their agendas and aspirations.
“I am truly grateful to CUFA for allowing me to be part of such a momentous event and I certainly consider myself fortunate to have had the unequalled exposure to credit union related messages and lesson of the hour during my second outing at the annual World Credit Union Conference and likewise my participation on the panel at the Global Women’s Leadership Network Forum 2014. It has been a truly memorable experience”.
CUFA is committed to promoting gender equality in the credit unions and financial cooperatives we develop, working to ensure that workplaces are inclusive, equitable and non-discriminatory. To find out more about CUFA’s work visit our website and to hear more about or to join the Global Women’s Leadership Network visit the World Council.
The Global Women’s Leadership Network was created by the World Council of Credit Unions to bring together credit union women from around the world. The network offers international perspectives on the common challenges faced globally such as growth strategies, alternative capital, and efficiency in operations. By interacting with other professionals of the same gender in a business forum, women can access unlimited resources and learn from the experiences of their peers. These women include credit union executives, board members, and business partners.