Nearly half the world’s population, some 2.7 billion people, live in poverty. Opportunity International Australia is a not-for-profit organisation which has taken a different approach to fighting this poverty. They believe poverty stricken people need a hand up not a hand out. Their vision is to see people lifted out of poverty permanently and they seek to do this by providing people in developing countries with a microfinance loan to help them start or grow their business. This in turn provides them with regular income and the potential to employ members of their local community.

Opportunity International was founded in 1979 by the late American entrepreneur Al Whittaker and Australian David Bussau, who both found that sustainable development needed more than just infrastructure. After travelling to Indonesia with his family to complete volunteer work, Mr Bussau realised that with financial backing, locals could solve their own problems. The recipient of Mr Bussau’s first loan was Ketut Suwira, an Indonesian farmer. The $50 loan enabled him to buy a sewing machine and start a tailoring business. Today he runs an import/export business, owns a taxi fleet and provides employment for his local community.

Opportunity International Australia is part of global network including; the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Canada, Singapore and Hong Kong. Together they work in more than 20 developing countries worldwide. The Australian office focuses their efforts on Indonesia, India and the Philippines. Each donation has the ability to help hundreds of people as money is continuously re-loaned out. Opportunity International Australia strongly believes a world without extreme poverty is possible.

Via Appia Networking WA are proud to welcome Opportunity International Australia as a sponsor of our Corporate Social Responsibility breakfast on September 13th.

More information  on Opportunity International Australia can be found at

For more information on our Corporate Social Responsibility event go to

Written By: Shauna Loren Upton

About Networking WA:
Corporate Event Management Specialist, Professional Conference Organiser

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