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© 2024 Opportunity Internationala 501(c)3 nonprofit. EIN: 540907624.

Opportunity International Global Network Celebrates 20 Years of Empowering Ghana with Opportunity International Savings and Loan

ACCRA, GHANA – Opportunity International and Opportunity International Savings and Loan Ltd. (OISL) have come together to proudly celebrate OISL’s 20th anniversary. As one of Ghana’s first financial institutions dedicated to providing crucial financial and non-financial services to underserved communities in the country, the celebration marks over GHS 3 Billion in total loans disbursed and over 668,000 people reached over the 2 decades.

“Since its inception, OISL has been instrumental in transforming lives, particularly in rural agricultural communities across the region,” said Opportunity International CEO Atul Tandon. “The people of Ghana’s entrepreneurial spirit and drive are the backbone of this great nation, and our collaboration with OISL proves that investing in the Ghanaian people results in transformational impact.”

As a vital member of the Opportunity International group, OISL works to extend comprehensive support to the unbanked and underserved populations in Ghana. Leveraging the extensive experience and capacity of Opportunity International’s global network, OISL has successfully managed and implemented some of the largest multi-year, multi-country, and multi-million dollar programs across Africa. These initiatives have been generously funded by esteemed donors, including USAID, FDCO (formerly DFID), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Mastercard Foundation, Caterpillar, John Deere, Cisco, and Credit Suisse, among many others.

“With hundreds of thousands of clients today, this work sets us apart as one of the only savings and loans dedicated to supporting the extreme poor,” said OISL CEO Kwame Owusu-Boateng. “Twenty years of service is a proud moment to celebrate with not just our founders, partners, and stakeholders, but with the clients we serve every day.”

The celebration brought in numerous OISL clients from past and present to join in the festivities—from former street porters turned wholesalers to microbusiness shop owners. Those also in attendance included Governor Dr. Ernest Addison of the Bank of Ghana, numerous regional chiefs, including His Royal Majesty Dr. Nii Ayi-Bonte II, (Gbese Mantse), Nii Abossey Okai III (Chief of Abossey Okai who represented the GA Mantse, His Royal Majesty, King Tackie Teiko Tsuru II), and founding OISL Board Member Rev. Dr. Kwabena Darko.

This week’s celebration is the capstone in a year-long series of activities to honor 20 years of working with the Ghanaian people. Over the months, OISL has celebrated the milestone through acts of charity and recognition, including open forums with MSE and microloan clients, a donation to the Otumfuo Osei Tutu II Foundation, and engagements with community leaders like the Ga Mantse, King Tackie Teiko Tsuru II and the Paramount Chief of the Gbese Traditional Area, Dr. Nii Ayi Bonte II.

OISL’s dedication to community service has been underscored by years of programming to directly support the most vulnerable in the community. The organization’s trailblazing efforts in financial inclusion for the disabled has helped provide over 2,838 Ghanaians receive financial services. Their most recent endeavor to train street porters throughout Accra has helped over 292 women build new means to earn a living.

The 20-year celebration also marked the passing of the torch for OISL leadership, with a changing of the guard at the Board Chair level scheduled for this year. Current Board Chair Katey Assem recognized CEO Owusu-Boateng for the long-term stability and growth generated within his time in office and welcomed incoming Board Chair Ms. Alberta Quarcoopome as the first woman to lead OISL in its 20-year history.

“If my mother was here today, she would be proud and tell us we are on the right path,” said outgoing Board Chair Asem. “The impact we have created today is apparent. Not only through numbers and data but through real people. Real impact. It is an honor to have been a part of this legacy.”

Asem also serves on the board of the global development organization Opportunity International, an institution with a 53-year legacy committed to implementing business solutions to combat poverty and build sustainable local organizations deeply embedded within the communities they serve. In Ghana, Opportunity International established Sinapi Aba in 1994, Sinapi Aba Savings and Loan (SASL) in 2003, Opportunity International Savings and Loan in 2004, and Opportunity International Ghana (NGO) in 2017. Through these institutions, Opportunity has consistently delivered impactful, donor-funded programs across the nation.

OISL and SASL have collectively been serving Ghana for a combined 45 years, establishing 84 branches across the country, employing over 2,500 staff, and providing loans to over 1.5 million micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs). They have also opened savings accounts for over 1 million Ghanaians. Their dedication to lending in poor rural communities, supporting smallholder farmers, and empowering women has earned them numerous national and international accolades.

As trailblazers in the financial sector, OISL and SASL have faced and overcome numerous challenges in their mission to reach and serve the most marginalized populations. Now, they are set to accelerate their growth in the agricultural sector, increase lending to women, and actively recruit youth across Ghana to pursue careers in agriculture. This strategic focus aims not only to transform individual lives but also to create job opportunities that will benefit communities and the nation as a whole.

About Opportunity International

Opportunity International is a global non-profit that has been equipping people to build sustainable livelihoods and educate their children for 52 years. Opportunity provides 18.7 million families with innovative financial resources, training, and support to grow their small businesses and send their children to school.

Discover more at opportunity.org or join the conversation on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and X.

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