Yeah but, why Africa?

The city of Nairobi, Kenya

This past weekend I had the pleasure of celebrating the 60th wedding anniversary of two amazing people. It turned into a small family reunion of sorts, with people coming in from all over the country to celebrate.

Seeing so many relatives I hadn’t seen in at least 3 years – and some of them much, much longer! – the conversation covered all the basics you’d expect. Where are you living these days? What are you doing for work? What’s new in your world?

I excitedly shared that I’ve been working with credit unions in Africa to help build The ACCOSCA Academy, a first-of-its-kind blended training program and place to be located in Nairobi, Kenya to advance the education and training of SACCO (Savings and Credit Cooperatives in Africa) employees.

“I’m so honored to be doing this work with ACCOSCA, the African Confederation of Cooperative Savings and Credit Associations,” I’d proudly announce. “ACCOSCA works with over 5,000 credit unions throughout the continent of Africa. The work is really rewarding and cool!”

Without fail, whoever I was speaking with had the same reaction. A blank stare, followed up with the question, “Yeah but, why Africa?” As in, you could work anywhere in the world. Why Africa?

You might be wondering the same thing, and thanks for asking! America’s credit unions have a long history of improving consumer lives across the globe by strengthening the credit union movement. The reach of this project is exceptional in its influence of millions of consumers across countries that, when strengthened, will produce a healthier global economy for U.S. credit unions to operate within.

Not to mention that our time, talent and dollars have exponential impact through The ACCOSCA Academy. For a fraction of the investment of a U.S.-based project, the contributions to The ACCOSCA Academy reach millions.

This is truly financial well-being for all with ground-level, direct development of African credit union leaders impacting 750 million Africans to strengthen the global economic system with benefits spreading to U.S. credit unions and worldwide.

Some of America’s most successful and grand credit unions began with humble beginnings of shoe boxes, lockers, briefcases and church basements. Through education, idea sharing, technology and leadership, these credit unions transformed into the organizations we know today providing financial potential for American consumers. This project intends to spark that transformation for SACCOs to offer financial opportunities to African consumers.

It’s not every day that credit unions can change a continent. This project with its scope and reach will address socio-economic needs of African villages, cities, neighborhoods and nations. Rare are the times in our credit union history when such an opportunity has presented itself.

I’m proud to be a part of a credit union legacy. The global impact of this project is unprecedented in recent credit union history. Not since HR1151 have credit unions had such an opportunity to influence consumer well-being. This time, it’s a global opportunity with reach and impact for millions of consumers and communities.

Care to join us? Check out our website for more info and to be a part of this historical opportunity. Or reach out to me directly at I’d love to have your help as we change a continent!

Angela Prestil

Angela Prestil

As Senior Consultant for CU Difference, Angela brings a distinct specialty set in the critical areas of employee engagement, leadership development, and member loyalty strategies. She has helped hundreds of ... Details