Social Investment with ECLOF as a means of pursuing the Sustainable Development Goals

Financial inclusion is seen as an enabler of 8 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nation’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, among them SDG 1 (Ending poverty), SDG 2 (Ending hunger, achieving food security and promoting sustainable agriculture), SDG 5 (Achieving gender equality) and SDG 10 (Reducing inequality).

The network of ECLOF offers opportunities to impact investors, churches and related organizations to invest in financial inclusion: in general or under specific themes like women empowerment, sustainable agriculture, education, water & sanitation, or housing. Investment can be in the form of a loan to ECLOF International or directly to an ECLOF member.

Churches and related organizations see investment in ECLOF as an alternative form of attaining their social mission – by investing their money “mission aligned” under the theme of social justice. Unlike mainstream investments in the financial markets, investment with ECLOF allows investors to physically see the impact of their money on the working poor whom ECLOF serves. Reputable organizations – including churches in the global North and South, church-related organizations and social impact investors – view ECLOF as a vehicle effectively fighting poverty and inequality.

Find out more about the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals

Voices from our partners

“The Council and ECLOF share the mission of community empowerment and commitment towards “abundant life” (John 10.10). Therefore ECLOF serves communities in the margins with a clear vision of promoting a viable and sustainable economic base and accountability. It is precisely her Christian orientation that makes ECLOF distinct from other microfinance providers.”

Rev. Rex ReyesGeneral Secretary - National Council of Churches of the Philippines

The National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP) is a fellowship of 19 Churches and related organizations. The Episcopal Church, the Methodist Church and the United Church of Christ in the Philippines have been investing part of their funds with ECLOF Philippines via the NCCP since 2004. Financially and socially, the investments have performed to the full satisfaction of the churches to the effect that they have increased their invested amounts over time.

“With ECLOF International, the Sisters of Mercy have intentionally put their money “on mission,” helping to create a just world and a sustainable earth. In addition to ECLOF’s steadfast focus on mission, we appreciate the strength of a global network that combines insight from community and church leaders, as well as local staff, to reach those most in need.”

Sarah B. SmithDirector - Mercy Partnership Fund

Mercy Partnership Fund is the global community investing program of Mercy Investment Services, the socially responsible asset management ministry of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas. Since 1995, Mercy’s community investments have benefitted more than 100 organizations, reaching beneficiaries in 66 countries and throughout the United States. Mercy Partnership Fund supports projects that benefit the economically poor, especially women and children, concentrating on those who are unserved or poorly served through traditional financial sources.

“We invest in ECLOF first, because of its focus on women and rural areas and its commitment to the social mission, then its flexibility to help small farmers and micro entrepreneurs. The network … is an additional strength because of the relationships that last over time. It is important to create strong infrastructure for these communities that will empower people in a variety of ways.”

Sister Corinne FlorekAdvisor - Adrian Dominican Sisters Community Investment Fund The Fund provides investments and loans to community-based enterprises that demonstrate a commitment to social justice through alternative economic endeavors. The goal is to help create sustainable jobs and affordable housing for those marginalized by the larger economy.

“CWM seeks to be part of a dynamic movement of building life-affirming communities. ECLOF’s focus on (local) congregations is close to CWM’s missional priority of expressing our prophetic witness through missional congregations that seek to connect with their communities in a life-affirming manner.”

Rev. Dr. Collin CowanGeneral Secretary - Council for World Mission

The Council for World Mission is a worldwide partnership of Christian churches committed to sharing their resources globally to carry out God’s mission locally. CWM is in 40 countries around the world with 32 member churches representing 50,000 congregations and a population of 21.5 million members globally. CWM is engaged in a cross-section of ecumenical partnerships … guided by its Vision Fullness of life for all creation (Jn. 10:10).

“With ECLOF we found a way to help many more people than by making a small donation of 400 francs to a single organization. It feels like multiplying our impact by factor 100. We would highly recommend other churches to consider placing an investment with ECLOF. Sitting on a bank account, the money certainly won’t profit the poor.

It is important to help people take their future into their own hands and eventually become self-sustaining. But ECLOF is not just about giving loans. Poor people also get technical support and training from ECLOF’s local member organization. In combination this helps them succeed with their small project.”

André BourquiCouncil President - Swiss Roman Catholic congregation of Begnins

The Swiss Roman Catholic congregation of Begnins is part of the parish of Nyon which unites over 22,000 Catholics in 27 different villages and towns. Since 2013, the congregation has been placing an interest-free loan of 40,000 Swiss francs with ECLOF.

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