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Carol Stream, Illinois 60132

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© 2022 Opportunity Internationala 501(c)3 nonprofit. EIN: 540907624.

50 Weeks of Opportunity

Each week for the next 50 weeks, we will share a piece of Opportunity’s history—major or minor, sobering or inspiring, we have gotten where we are today by facing some of the world’s greatest challenges, with you by our side. Please join us in celebrating the many impactful moments that have built the foundation on which we will embark on our most audacious vision yet: ending extreme poverty.

50 for 50: Looking Back at 50 Years

by Atul Tandon

When Al Whittaker made a tiny loan to Carlos Moreno a street spice seller, in Colombia in 1971, he could not have imagined the tidal waves of impact his one small action would spark. Al’s start in Latin America, combined with David Bussau’s similar efforts in Asia, launched Opportunity International—which now has reached nearly 250 million people over the past 50 years. Carlos Moreno, Colombia For five decades, Opportunity has stayed committed to its founding principles: serving those…

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50 for 50: Back to the Beginning - David Bussau

by Alexis Beggs Olsen

This essay is a selection from the special edition of UnPoverty by Mark Lutz. The new edition has been released in celebration of Opportunity International’s 50th Anniversary, featuring new chapters from leaders throughout Opportunity’s history. To receive a copy, simply make a donation of any size to Opportunity and we’ll send it to you. David Bussau always knew that having “enough” was about more than financial success.   Throughout his life, David would grow in his understanding…

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50 for 50: Back to the Beginning: Al Whittaker

by Don Whittaker

This essay is a selection from the special edition of UnPoverty by Mark Lutz. The new edition has been released in celebration of Opportunity International’s 50th Anniversary, featuring new chapters from leaders throughout Opportunity’s history. To receive a copy, simply make a donation of any size to Opportunity and we’ll send it to you. Dad told enough stories about his work with Opportunity International to fill an entire book. What I want to share in the next few pages is the way God called…

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50 for 50: Origin Stories - Africa

by Larry Reed

This essay is a selection from the special edition of UnPoverty by Mark Lutz. The new edition has been released in celebration of Opportunity International’s 50th Anniversary, featuring new chapters from leaders throughout Opportunity’s history. To receive a copy, simply make a donation of any size to Opportunity and we’ll send it to you. The board of Opportunity’s partner Zambuko Trust in Zimbabwe had a special guest one evening. Theresa, her hair gray, her dress modest and traditional,…

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50 for 50: Partnering for Impact

by Allison Kooser

Throughout our history, Opportunity International has relied on incredible partners to help us launch initiatives, grow programs, develop new strategies, and better serve our clients and their families. With the support of remarkable individuals, foundations, government partners, and corporations, we have built a robust global community that works together to help families break the cycle of poverty. Join us as we look back at some of our pivotal moments of collaboration over the last 50 years, and…

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50 for 50: 7 Fundraisers We’ll Never Forget

by Allison Kooser

Opportunity’s work for the last 50 years has been made possible by an incredible community. From corporate partners to family foundations to individual donors, our supporters have invested in and created opportunities for hard-working people around the world.  Occasionally, these generous people—people just like you!—decide to get creative with their giving and rally their friends and family to join them. Through peer-to-peer fundraisers, community giving, and wild challenges, Opportunity…

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50 for 50: Building Healthy Communities

by Mukti Bosco and Gayathri Prashanth

This essay is a selection from the special edition of UnPoverty by Mark Lutz. The new edition has been released in celebration of Opportunity International’s 50th Anniversary, featuring new chapters from leaders throughout Opportunity’s history. To receive a copy, simply make a donation of any size to Opportunity and we’ll send it to you.India faces intense challenges on every level.Over the past two years, the healthcare infrastructure throughout the country has been thoroughly tested,…

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50 for 50: Remembering Opportunity International in Russia

by Stacie Schrader

In 1991, at 24 years old, I felt called to Nizhny Novgorod, Russia (then still the Soviet Union city of Gorky). At the time I was curious about the political, social, and economic changes that were taking place in communist countries. And in those first days, I often wondered where the Lord had brought me. Then, within months of my arrival, the Soviet Union collapsed. Amidst the ruins of the former political system, economic chaos reigned. I witnessed long lines for bread, and rising poverty and…

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50 for 50: Origin Stories - Asia

by Opportunity International

Opportunity International finds its origins in two corners of the world. While Al Whittaker began making loans in Latin America, Opportunity’s co-founder David Bussau initiated a loan program in Indonesia following a devastating earthquake. In 1974, a farmer named Ketut received Opportunity International’s first loan in Asia. With $50 from Bussau, Ketut and his wife began a tailoring business after purchasing a sewing machine. The microfinance program proved as effective as it was replicable—in…

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50 for 50: 7 Facts about our progress out of poverty

by Opportunity International

Opportunity International has spent 50 years learning what clients need to break the cycle of poverty. Through innovative solutions that help families build sustainable livelihoods, farmers improve their yields, and children go to school, we have been part of a global movement to reduce extreme poverty—a movement that has seen remarkable progress since our founding in 1971. This weekend as we celebrate the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, we are looking back at just how far we’ve…

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