FAQ

How does the Village Entrepreneur program work?

The Cufa Village Entrepreneur program supports the most disadvantaged rural villagers to change their life and break the poverty cycle. Village Entrepreneurs are provided training, start-up materials and financial support to start a small business that helps them to provide their families with essential services such as healthcare, education for their children, sanitation, electricity and water.

Why do you call them Community Investors?

We call them Community Investors because they believe in the power of entrepreneurship and are willing to invest in these families so they can start and run their own business, they are giving an opportunity to those that really want it. Even though, they don’t get their “investment” back they still put their money in to support a Village Entrepreneur’s dream. That’s why we call them Community Investors.

How do I become a Community Investor?

You can easily become a Community Investor by going to our homepage and identifying a Village Entrepreneur you want to support, you can select a female or male entrepreneur and, if you have any business preference, you can also select them by business. Once you select your Village Entrepreneur, all you have to do is confirm the details and click “Support this VE”, then you can click on VE Cart which then will take you to enter your credit card details.

The most common is a Visa or MasterCard debit, but we can also set up a direct debit from a nominated bank account or process your support in the form of an annual or one-off payment.

If you would like to pay for a whole year ($468 AUD) or the whole program (3 years for $1,404 AUD)) for your Village Entrepreneur you can get in touch with us on ve@cufa.org.au or you can do it directly when you login to your account.

How do I keep up to date with my support?

You can easily cancel or pay off your support to your Village Entrepreneur by logging in to your account and click on Select Options and change the frequency of payment for your Village Entrepreneur. If you have any issues, you can always get in touch with us via email to ve@cufa.org.au or via telephone to 1 300 490 467.

How long will my commitment as a Community Investor be?

Most Village Entrepreneurs become financially sustainable within less than 3 years and therefore the Community Investor can choose to cease the support then or move on to support a new Village Entrepreneur.

Cufa sends quarterly reports to keep our Community Investors informed and engaged with their Village Entrepreneur’s business progress. Once your Village Entrepreneur becomes sustainable, we issue a Sustainability letter so you can feel proud, as a Community Investor, of your donation! After that, it’s the Community Investor’s choice to continue to support a new Village Entrepreneur or cease your support to the program.

How and when are funds given to Village Entrepreneurs?

Funds are provided to Village Entrepreneurs via their credit union each quarter, which ensures they spend wisely and stay on track with their business plans. To receive their investor funds, they need to attend and participate in the quarterly support workshop and evaluation session and demonstrate that they have been working on their business throughout the last quarter. Our project officers are also available to provide any other relevant support for Village Entrepreneurs if necessary.

How do I track the progress of the Village Entrepreneur that I support?

Every 3 months you will receive a progress report after your Village Entrepreneurs receive their Cufa support and guidance visit. Support is usually provided during September, December, March and June depending on local conditions and reporting is usually sent out around a month later.

What happens with excess funds?

In the event that funds exceed the amount required to support an individual Village Entrepreneur, Cufa will direct the excess funds to the Village Entrepreneur project fund.

Can Community Investors directly communicate with Village Entrepreneurs?

Cufa is committed to the protection of our Village Entrepreneurs and their families’ privacy, security and practical issues that prevent direct communication between the Community Investor and Village Entrepreneur. The Code of Conduct that Cufa adheres to specifically protects beneficiaries of our projects and therefore we are unable to provide specific contact details. However, if you were to plan a visit to the region, Cufa could arrange to guided visit to see the program and talk to some Village Entrepreneurs, at your cost.

“I am very proud to support the incredible Village Entrepreneur program. It is so rewarding to be able to help families become financially independent and create a brighter future for their children. A micro-credit is the perfect way to help from a distance and it is wonderful to be able to then support the next family. Huge thanks to Cufa for being able to provide this incredible way of being able to help.”