Media
26 November 2018
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australia
Climate Change, Disasters and Women: New Podcast Episode

Climate Change Disasters and Women New Podcast Episode Melissa

This month, ActionAid’s Melissa Bungcaras has appeared as a guest on Cufa’s podcast series, Conversations in Development. The series delves into issues surrounding foreign aid and social change, exploring diverse themes in the international development field including voluntourism, child labour and microfinance.

The episode, Climate change, disasters and women,  was released on Monday 26 November with Melissa appearing alongside Cufa’s CEO and podcast host, Dr Peter Mason. Together they will discuss climate change, natural disasters and the effect of these on women.

www.ConversationsInDevelopment.com.au

With the effects of climate change increasing the amount of natural disasters occuring across the globe, a number of vulnerable groups have been impacted. Women are one of the groups that have been affected and this will continue to become a more prominent issue moving into the future.

Melissa is the Gender and Resilience Manager for ActionAid Australia. She is currently managing a portfolio of programs across the Asia-Pacific focused on women’s resilience to climate change and disasters and drives policy advocacy on climate justice and women’s leadership in emergencies. Melissa has over 10 years’ experience in international development and environmental management, primarily in the Asia-Pacific region.

The episode examines how gender inequality becomes lethal in natural disasters where women die in far greater numbers than men. Patriarchal systems often leave women responsible for children and elderly people in a disaster and exclude women from accessing information that could save their lives. Melissa describes how and why women should take a leading role in disaster preparedness planning and how aid agencies and governments both have a role to play in reducing the gender gap.

Get up to date with this podcast by listening to the previous episodes. Simply search “Conversation in Development” into Apple Podcasts or your favourite podcast streaming service. Episode 7 on climate change, disasters and women streaming from Monday 26 November 2018.

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29 October 2018
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australia
COBA 2018 Melbourne: A Great Opportunity for Cufa

The Customer Owned Banking Convention, COBA 2018, was recently held in Melbourne from 21-23 October 2018. This year’s theme was ‘The Challenge of Change’.  Over the course of the convention speakers and exhibitors informed the sector about how to meet these challenges and take advantage of the moment.

 

COBA 2018 Banner

 

With change comes opportunity and the convention delved into topics surrounding the banking royal commission and a range of new regulatory proposals. New technology in the industry was also discussed with plenty of it on show in the exhibition hall.

Cufa was lucky enough to be in attendance with a stand thanks to ASL. It was an excellent opportunity to meet and thank many of our supporters from the community-owned banking industry in person. 

The convention was a great chance to show the industry the amazing work and achievements that Cufa has been able to build on over the past year. In addition, we were also able to inform people of the new work Cufa has secured and offer people the trip of a lifetime with our Cultural Learning Trip to Cambodia.

Cufa’s Village Entrepreneur program was on show as well, providing an excellent opportunity to discuss with people the life-changing impact it has on the lives of people within remote communities.

Cufa Chair Margot Sweeny said of the convention, “I had a lot of fun this year. It was a great opportunity to hear about all the changes in the industry. The banking royal commission and AI were very interesting talking points. We also had an amazing stand this year, provided by ASL; and it gave us the chance to thank many of our great supporters."

Thank you to everyone that took the time to visit our stand at COBA 2018. If you have any further questions about the Cufa Cultural Learning Trip or our Village Entrepreneur program, please feel free to contact us:

Phone – 1300 490 467

Email – marketing@cufa.org.au

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29 October 2018
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australia
Guy Winship: Podcast in Remembrance

Conversations in Development, Cufa’s podcast discussing aid and development, has recently released a special episode in remembrance of Guy Winship. The episode will delve into his journey from South Africa to being the founder and CEO of an NGO. This follows on from previous episodes exploring microfinance, child labour, foreign aid and other important development issues.

www.ConversationsInDevelopment.com.au

Guy Winship was the founder and CEO of Good Return, an organisation that provides microfinance across the Asia-Pacific region. Good Return delivers programs to those who are financially and socially excluded, empowering through financial inclusion. Guy was a development expert who worked in Africa, Asia and the Pacific for 30 years. He also consulted and advised governments and NGOs on microfinance, public policy and vocational training.

The episode was recorded a few years ago between Guy and Conversations in Development host and Cufa CEO, Dr Peter Mason. Within the episode, Guy discusses his motivations for working in the development field. He retells his experiences of Apartheid South Africa and how that forged his belief in social justice and explains how he got his beginning with Good Return in Australia and the impact that had on his life, especially his family.

 

Guy Winship

 

 

Get up to date by listening to the previous episodes. Simply search “Conversation in Development” into Apple Podcasts or your favourite podcast streaming service. Episode 6, Investing in social justice: Guy Winship, is available now!

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27 September 2018
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australia
MEDIA RELEASE – World Tourism Day: Cufa Explores Volunteer Tourism in Podcast

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 27th September 2018

Cufa has today released a new episode in their podcast series, Conversations in Development, hosted by Cufa’s CEO Dr Peter Mason and journalist Olivia Rosenman.

Focusing on volunteer tourism, the episode features special guest Stephen Wearing. Stephen is a professor at the University of Newcastle and University of Technology Sydney. His research focuses on sustainable tourism and the importance of community-based approaches in the tourism and volunteering sector. He also spent 22 years running VOICE, a not-for-profit organisation that sent volunteers on grassroots, community-identified development projects.

World Tourism Day, 27 September, celebrates tourism and raises awareness for the role that it provides within the international community. It is one of the fastest growing and most important economic sectors in the world.

This Conversations in Development episode explores volunteer tourism, a multi-billion dollar industry in which travellers participate in voluntary work. Stephen discusses what the industry is missing while using his expert insight to outline how the industry is changing. Additionally, he explores in what way it could be better regulated and the role that the media plays in popular perceptions of volunteer tourist destinations.

Cufa’s CEO, Dr Peter Mason commented, “Volunteer tourism is an excellent initiative if it is completed in a sustainable and respectful manner. The industry has, unfortunately, developed a bad reputation for institutions such as orphanages. Volunteer trips should be focused on making enduring skill based contributions that benefit communities in the long-term.”

Conversations in Development is available to download and stream with Apple Podcasts or your favourite podcast platform.

Visit the podcast website: http://ConversationsInDevelopment.com.au

Conversations in Development: RSS feed

Dr. Peter Mason is the CEO of international development agency Cufa. Cufa’s programs focus on economic development of underserved and disadvantaged communities across the Asia Pacific region. With multiple approaches including education, employment, enterprise, and financial institution development, Cufa’s projects are implemented by local Cufa offices and country staff who work with local communities, organisations, and government. Peter has worked in Cambodia, Timor Leste, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Samoa, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, and the Federated States of Micronesia. His research interests include examining the way in which the social and the economic interact within the development environment and he has recently published a chapter, Credit Unions, in The Routledge Companion to Alternative Organization.

Olivia Rosenman is the executive producer of Fourth Estate, a weekly media affairs show radio broadcast in Sydney on 2SER. She has previously worked as a reporter for news agencies in both Sydney and Asia. As an AusAID Youth Ambassador for Development, Olivia ran the communications department of a disability services organization in Nanning, China. Olivia holds a Master of Journalism from the University of Hong Kong and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Sydney.

 

– ENDS –

 

For all media enquiries, interview and image requests, please contact:

Carolina Flores

Marketing and Communications Manager
1300 490 467

carolina.flores@cufa.org.au

MEDIA RELEASE in PDF format

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19 September 2018
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australia
Volunteer Tourism: Provocative New Podcast Episode

Volunteer Tourism Stephen WearingCufa’s podcast, Conversations in Development, will be releasing a new episode to mark World Tourism Day on Thursday 27 September. A new guest will be welcomed to discuss volunteer tourism with the hosts. The episode will reveal the complexities of volunteer tourism. This follows on from episodes on microfinance, child labour and other important development topics.

http://www.ConversationsInDevelopment.com.au

Volunteer tourism is a form of tourism in which travellers participate in voluntary work, typically for a charity. This particular form can be a very divisive topic. It can be extremely beneficial for many involved. Adversely, however, there are often negative implications for unskilled tourists working in developing countries.

Stephen Wearing joins the episode as an expert guest in the field. He is a conjoint professor at the University of Newcastle and an associate professor at the University of Technology Sydney. His research focuses on sustainable tourism and the importance of community-based approaches in the tourism and volunteering sector. Stephen also ran VOICE Volunteers in Community Engagement for 22 years. This was a not-for-profit organisation that sent volunteers on grassroots, community-identified development projects.

The episode explores the multi-billion dollar industry of volunteer tourism. Podcast hosts, Dr Peter Mason and Olivia Rosenman, join with Stephen discussing what we are missing in an industry that is rarely researched and empirical data is scarce. Stephen uses his expert insight to describe how the industry is changing. Additionally, he explores how it could be regulated and how the media plays a role in popular perceptions of volunteer tourists.

Get up to date by listening to the previous episodes. Simply search “Conversation in Development” into Apple Podcasts or your favourite podcast streaming service. Episode 5 on volunteer tourism streaming from World Tourism Day, Thursday 27 September 2018.

 

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19 September 2018
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australia
Colette McInerney: Cufa’s Newest Board Member

Colette McInerneyWe are delighted to announce that Colette McInerney has joined the Cufa Board of Directors.

Colette brings over 20 years of experience in leading NGO’s both in Australia and internationally. With this, she brings a unique synthesis of effective and respectful leadership skills and practical experience. These have been gained through various roles such as the Laos-based Country Director for a global NGO. She also spent time as the CEO of an Indigenous financial inclusion foundation and as a strategic public-private partnership manager.

With an extensive knowledge in microfinance and financial inclusion, Colette brings a great deal of expertise in female-centred economic development programs. In addition, she is a skilled fundraiser and strategic stakeholder management advisor. With considerable experience leading NGO’s, Colette has also delivered best practice programs that are responsive to community needs, underpinned by rigorous governance and management standards. 

Moreover, Colette has a unique capacity to work adeptly across diverse and often complex environments with ease and confidence. This only further assists in her development of stakeholder relationship management.

As Cufa runs multiple female-focused programs aiming to empower women across the Asia-Pacific, we are excited for the invaluable insight of Colette McInerney on our board!

Read more about Who We Are

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30 August 2018
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australia
MEDIA RELEASE – Cufa Makes Extensive Social Return on Investment, Report Finds

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 30th August 2018                                                       

 

Cufa announced today the release of their Social Return on Investment (SROI) report, quantifying how much social value is created as a ratio of investment into the programs.

For every $1 invested into Cufa’s programs, $12.33 of social value is created. Overall, $30.4 million of value was created in the form of education, employment, enterprises and economic institutions. The number has more than tripled since the last report in 2014, as a result of the expansion in the scope and scale of Cufa’s development programs.

The report provides a review of all of Cufa’s programs while measuring the sustainable development Cufa provides within communities. It is Cufa’s aim to not supply financial handouts, but instil long-term economic development that alleviates poverty for current and future generations.

Some of the outstanding results included:

  • Created over $13.5 million of social value in the Bougainville Youth Initiative
  • Returned $28 of social value for every $1 invested in the Village Entrepreneur program
  • Increased total community savings in Timor-Leste credit unions to $266,456
  • Provided financial access in rural Cambodia with 21 credit unions formed
  • Encouraged female empowerment with multiple women’s focused self-help groups in Myanmar

Cufa’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr Peter Mason commented, “Social return on investment reporting provides an opportunity to measure social and environmental value not currently reflected in conventional financial reports. Cufa has conducted the SROI report to measure the success of our programs across the Asia-Pacific. The results of the report affirm Cufa’s commitment to implementing sustainable development throughout disadvantaged communities.”

READ THE FULL REPORT

 

– ENDS –

 

For all media enquiries, interview and image requests, please contact:

Carolina Flores

Marketing and Communications Manager
1300 490 467

carolina.flores@cufa.org.au

MEDIA RELEASE in PDF format

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13 August 2018
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australia
MEDIA RELEASE – Microfinance Expert, Mahir Momand, Joins New Cufa Podcast Episode

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 13th August 2018

 

Today, Cufa announced the release of a new episode that focuses on microfinance in their podcast series, Conversations in Development. The podcast is hosted by Cufa’s CEO Dr Peter Mason and journalist Olivia Rosenman.

The episode features microfinance expert Mahir Momand as a special guest. Mahir is the founding CEO of Thrive Refugee Enterprise, a not-for-profit focused on providing microfinance and mentoring assistance to refugees in Australia for starting their own business.

More than 150 million of the world’s poorest people are assisted by microfinance. It is a market-driven approach to development, alleviating poverty through the creation of local economies and sustainable livelihoods. The microfinance programs run by Mahir have helped establish a total of 165,000 small and medium business enterprises in Afghanistan. These have provided a livelihood for nearly 1 million people.

This Conversations in Development episode, with the aid of Mahir’s experienced insight, explores the basics behind the topic of microfinance, using examples from his work in Afghanistan. He details how he reduced poverty, addressed gender inequality, and ultimately threatened the basis of the Taliban insurgency.

Microfinance is a proven method in alleviating poverty in developing nations.” said Dr Peter Mason, CEO of Cufa. “Microfinance provides an opportunity to develop microenterprises for those that do not have access to financial institutions. By combining the teaching of business skills and microfinance, the most disadvantaged individuals can build a successful business.”

Conversations in Development is available to download and stream with Apple Podcasts or your favourite podcast platform.

Visit the podcast website: http://ConversationsInDevelopment.com.au

Conversations in Development: RSS feed

Dr. Peter Mason is the CEO of international development agency Cufa. Cufa’s programs focus on economic development of underserved and disadvantaged communities across the Asia Pacific region. With multiple approaches including education, employment, enterprise, and financial institution development, Cufa’s projects are implemented by local Cufa offices and country staff who work with local communities, organisations, and government. Peter has worked in Cambodia, Timor Leste, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Samoa, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, and the Federated States of Micronesia. His research interests include examining the way in which the social and the economic interact within the development environment and he has recently published a chapter, Credit Unions, in The Routledge Companion to Alternative Organization.

Olivia Rosenman is the executive producer of Fourth Estate, a weekly media affairs show radio broadcast in Sydney on 2SER. She has previously worked as a reporter for news agencies in both Sydney and Asia. As an AusAID Youth Ambassador for Development, Olivia ran the communications department of a disability services organization in Nanning, China. Olivia holds a Master of Journalism from the University of Hong Kong and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Sydney.

 

– ENDS –

 

For all media enquiries, interview and image requests, please contact:

Carolina Flores

Marketing and Communications Manager
1300 490 467

carolina.flores@cufa.org.au

MEDIA RELEASE in PDF format

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18 July 2018
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australia
New Podcast Episode on Microfinance: Building economies, improving lives

Conversations in Development Logo

Cufa’s podcast, Conversations in Development, will welcome a new guest to discuss microfinance with the hosts. Following on from previous episodes that have focused on child labour and foreign aid, this episode explores microfinancing in developing countries and breaks down the idea of integrating refugees into society.

http://www.ConversationInDevelopment.com.au

Microfinance is a market-driven approach to development, alleviating poverty through the creation of local economies and sustainable livelihoods. 

This episodes guest, Mahir Momand, is the CEO of Thrive Refugee Enterprise, an organisation that provides microfinance and business support to refugees and asylum seekers in Australia. Mahir’s prior experience in Afghanistan included as the CEO of the National Association of Credit Unions and positions with the World Bank and UNHCR. He has helped establish a total of 165,000 small and medium business enterprises in Afghanistan, providing a livelihood for nearly 1 million people.

The episode explains microfinancing in the developing world, touches on refugees and their integration both economically and socially into society, and Mahir describes his journey as a refugee being threatened and shot by the Taliban and ultimately ending up in Australia.

Get up to date by listening to the previous episodes. Simply search “Conversation in Development” into Apple Podcasts or your favourite podcast streaming service. Episode 4 streaming from Monday 13 August 2018.

 

Mahir , Peter and Olivia talk microfinance

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26 June 2018
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australia
MEDIA RELEASE – Losing their childhood: Cufa publishes podcast on child labour

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 26th June 2018

 

Cufa announced today the release of a new episode focusing on child labour in their podcast series, Conversations in Development, hosted by Cufa’s CEO Dr Peter Mason and journalist Olivia Rosenman.

The episode features lawyer, strategist, and activist, Brynn O’Brien as a special guest. Brynn is currently the Executive Director of the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility, an organisation that holds Australia’s largest companies accountable for their impacts on people and the environment.

152 million children throughout the world are currently engaged in child labour. It is a major worldwide issue that deprives children of their childhood and creates a cycle of intergenerational poverty. The recent World Day Against Child Labour highlighted the global extent of child labour and the action required to eliminate it. This includes educating consumers about child labour in supply chains, empowering them to make ethical decisions in order to eliminate the practice.

With the unique insight provided by Brynn, this Conversations in Development episode unpacks many of the processes behind child labour and explores the need for transparency and ethical consumerism. The episode also explores the challenges behind meeting the UN Sustainable Development Goal of eliminating child labour by 2025.

“The link between child labour and intergenerational poverty is unmistakable.” said Dr Peter Mason, CEO of Cufa. “Consumers must be informed about the presence of child labour in companies’ supply chains so they can make informed and ethical decisions. Education is our most valuable tool to combat the issue.”

Conversations in Development is available to download and stream with Apple Podcasts or your favourite podcast platform.

Visit the podcast website: http://ConversationsInDevelopment.com.au

Conversations in Development: RSS feed

Dr. Peter Mason is the CEO of international development agency Cufa. Cufa’s programs focus on economic development of underserved and disadvantaged communities across the Asia Pacific region. With multiple approaches including education, employment, enterprise, and financial institution development, Cufa’s projects are implemented by local Cufa offices and country staff who work with local communities, organisations, and government. Peter has worked in Cambodia, Timor Leste, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Samoa, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, and the Federated States of Micronesia. His research interests include examining the way in which the social and the economic interact within the development environment and he has recently published a chapter, Credit Unions, in The Routledge Companion to Alternative Organization.

Olivia Rosenman is the executive producer of Fourth Estate, a weekly media affairs show radio broadcast in Sydney on 2SER. She has previously worked as a reporter for news agencies in both Sydney and Asia. As an AusAID Youth Ambassador for Development, Olivia ran the communications department of a disability services organization in Nanning, China. Olivia holds a Master of Journalism from the University of Hong Kong and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Sydney.

 

– ENDS –

 

For all media enquiries, interview and image requests, please contact:

Sam Priebee

Marketing Assistant
1300 490 467

sam.priebee@cufa.org.au

MEDIA RELEASE in PDF format

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