BBVA’s Group Executive Chairman met with the Board of Trustees of the BBVA Microfinance Foundation (BBVAMF) following the appointment of Anna Escobedo Cabral, expert in development and a leading voice in the defense of the most disadvantaged regions, as the Board’s new Chair. Francisco González praised Claudio González Vega’s work, who will step down as chair of the institution but will continue to contribute his broad experience in microfinance as member of the Board.
During the meeting, BBVA’s Group Executive Chairman paid tribute to BBVAMF’s contribution to society, which has already made a difference in the lives of over 5 million vulnerable entrepreneurs since its inception in 2007.
It was then when Francisco González said, speaking at an event attended by Queen Sofia of Spain that “microfinance is an effective tool to help people pull out of poverty and improve their lives."
More than ten years that have passed since he spoke those word, and the BBVA Microfinance Foundation has crystalized as a world class development powerhouse, with presence in five Latin American countries, which today supports more than 2 million entrepreneurs, over half of them women.
Women like Norma Ordóñez, Astrid Orjuela or Linda Cruz, who BBVA’s Group Executive Chairman met during a trip to Colombia. Their life stories, their small businesses and their drive to keep improving made a lasting impression on Francisco González.
Francisco González receives from Javier M. Flores, CEO of the BBVA Microfinance Foundation, a sculpture to thank him for his support during these 10 years - Fundación Microfinanzas BBVA
His visit to Soacha, one of the municipalities hardest hit by violence – now prioritized by the Government in the peace process – was one of the most memorable moments in BBVAMF’s institutional activity.
“I was impressed by the initiative, the effort and the tremendous enthusiasm of the entrepreneurs to get ahead and improve their and their families’ lives. They all work hard to achieve their goals every day, and they’re fulfilling their dreams of progress and of a better future for their loved ones,” said BBVA’s Group Executive Chairman when the Foundation celebrated its tenth anniversary. It was during an act where the Queen emphasized the role of women and the impact of the Foundation’s work on second generations: “Behind all that drive, there’s a profound desire for making strides for their children, and the need to provide them with access to a better education. In many cases, to an education.”
“I was impressed by the initiative, the effort and the tremendous enthusiasm of the entrepreneurs to get ahead and improve their and their families’ lives"
Francisco González, who has always been there during the Foundation’s key moments, wanted to meet with the new Board of Trustees and went over the most important milestones for 2018 with the Management Team. This year, the BBVAMF continued travelling to carry its experience to remote locations and tell the stories of the more than two million people it supports, not only the true stars of this project, but also, from the onset, its raison d’etre.