Trilogy International and Mercy Corps Partner to Maximize NGO Resources, Expand Access to Financial Services
Submitted by: Trilogy International Partners
Posted: Sep 23, 2010 – 07:09 PM EST
NEW YORK, Sep. 23 /CSRwire/ - PRNewswire-USNewswire/ - The Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) announced this morning that the Commitment to Action by Bellevue, Washington-based Trilogy International Partners and international relief and development agency Mercy Corps has been selected as a 'Feature Commitment' for its ability to "catalyze financial access and enable economic empowerment for the rural poor in Haiti through the introduction of mobile money services." The first-of-its-kind mobile money solution was launched on Tuesday. More on Trilogy and Mercy Corps' mobile money announcement can be found here.
Jack Dorsey, chief executive officer of Square and co-founder and chairman of Twitter recognized John Stanton, Chairman of Trilogy International Partners and Nancy Lindborg, President of Mercy Corps for their Featured Commitment prior to the Mobile Revolution: Transforming Access, Markets and Development panel at CGI in which Trilogy chairman and wireless pioneer John Stanton was a participant. The panel discussed the explosive growth of mobile phones in developing countries and how new mobile applications can be harnessed to stimulate economic development and lift millions out of poverty. In addition to Stanton, other panel members included Cherie Blair, founder of the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, Judith Rodin, president of the Rockefeller Foundation, Mohammad Kilany, co-founder of Souktel Mobile Phone Job Service, and Molly Melching, executive director of Tostan.
"Technology can play a unique role in the rebuilding of Haiti. Mobile Money is a great example of advanced wireless applications serving as a development tool," said Trilogy Chairman John Stanton after the Mobile Revolution: Transforming Access, Markets, and Development panel discussion. "It's very exciting to see that, through our partnership with Mercy Corps, mobile money is a reality for thousands of Haitian households today through our subsidiary Voila. We look forward to deploying a full commercial offering of mobile wallet services throughout Haiti."
Trilogy and Mercy Corps' joint program announced on Tuesday enables Mercy Corps to offer Voila's mobile money solutions for Haiti's unbanked for the first time ever. After piloting and testing the program for the past eight months, cash-for-work, grant and voucher recipients now have the ability to securely 'store value' on their mobile phones, withdraw all or part of their money, transfer funds to family members in need directly from their phones, and use phones to pay for goods directly with affiliated merchants. Over the next nine months, approximately 100,000 Haitians will benefit from Mercy Corps' cash programs.
"Mercy Corps is thrilled to partner with Trilogy International to bring mobile money to Haiti," said Nancy Lindborg, Mercy Corps president. "We know that the combination of mobile phones and financial services is a powerful one that can help people manage, save and strategically spend their money. For impoverished Haitians struggling to recover from January's earthquake, mobile money can open up a world of future financial opportunities. We are committed to helping them realize that future."
For relief and development organizations, wireless applications offer the opportunity to become more efficient and provide aid workers the ability to help build the foundation for economic growth that truly benefits Haiti's most impoverished families.
About the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI)
Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) convenes global leaders to devise and implement innovative solutions to some of the world's most pressing challenges. Since 2005, CGI Annual Meetings have brought together more than 125 current and former heads of state, 15 Nobel Peace Prize laureates, hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations, major philanthropists, directors of the most effective nongovernmental organizations, and prominent members of the media. These CGI members have made more than 1,900 commitments valued at $63 billion, which have already improved the lives of nearly 300 million people in more than 170 countries. The CGI community also includes CGI University (CGI U), a forum to engage college students in global citizenship, MyCommitment.org, an online portal where anybody can make a Commitment to Action, and CGI Lead, which engages a select group of young leaders from business, government, and civil society. For more information, visit www.clintonglobalinitiative.org.
About Voila and Trilogy International Partners
Voila is a leading mobile telecommunications operator in Haiti serving over a million customers. Since its inception over 10 years ago, it has invested over US$200 million in Haiti. Voila employs over 500 local staff and provides indirect employment to more than 15,000 Haitians through a micro-enterprise venture whereby local entrepreneurs sell time and minute recharges on a customized cell phone. In December 2009, Voila and parent company, Trilogy International Partners, based in Bellevue, WA, received the prestigious "Award for Corporate Excellence" from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in recognition of Voila's record of corporate social responsibility in Haiti. Trilogy also owns wireless communications systems in the Dominican Republic, Bolivia, and New Zealand. For more information on Trilogy, see its website: www.trilogy-international.com.
About Mercy Corps
Mercy Corps helps people in the world's toughest places turn the crises of natural disaster, poverty and conflict into opportunities for progress. Driven by local needs and market conditions, our programs provide communities with the tools and support they need to transform their own lives. Our worldwide team of 3,700 professionals is improving the lives of 16.7 million people in more than 40 countries. For more information, see mercycorps.org.