From 18 - 20 April, G&C Mutual Bank Board Chair Steve Helmich and CEO Rosanna Argall joined over 200 representatives at the 14th Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV) Annual Meeting.
The theme of the 2023 GABV Annual Meeting was ‘Banking on a Bolder Future’. In recent years there has been an increase in social and environmental challenges. The meeting, hosted by Amalgamated Bank, sought to discuss these challenges and how banks can collectively address them through the financial system. Values-based banks have a particularly important role to play, driving positive change in the banking system and delivering impact for millions of people globally.
On the first day, participants heard from special guests Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair, Clinton Foundation and Laurie Spengler, CEO, Courageous Capital Advisors who explored the role of banks and partnerships in times of disruption. “(We need) boldness to create impact and humility to recognise we do not know everything. We need to partner with others to address problems and bring solutions from a holistic perspective,” said Chelsea Clinton.
On the second day participants were taken on a range of curated learning visits:
- Criminal justice: This visit highlighted work to address the impact on families and communities when a person is incarcerated. A visit to an initiative using art as an outlet for disadvantaged and vulnerable young people completed the learning journey.
- Youth and community: Participants learned how early engagement of marginalised youth can lead to future success and financial wellbeing.
- Strengthening vulnerable neighbourhoods: This visit focused on how to retain neighbourhood diversity in the face of gentrification.
- Environmental racism and justice: Participants explored creative ways to address climate change, develop climate resilience and deliver climate justice for vulnerable low-income communities.
- Raising the wage: Participants engaged in a discussion about the most direct way to fight income inequality through higher wages.
- Community banking and Open Hiring: Organised by GABV member Spring Bank, this learning journey included a trip to their headquarters and a tour of the bakery that pioneered the Open Hiring model.
The final day of the GABV Annual Meeting saw insights from keynote speaker Marc Morial, President and CEO of the National Urban League, who discussed the importance of equity in the workforce. “The idea that we can see economic growth but not improvements in poverty and unemployment rates is a moral question for world leaders,” said Marc Morial.
Overall, it was a fantastic few days where GABV members focussed on strategies to collectively address the increase in social and environmental challenges that our communities face.
About the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV)
The GABV is a network of independent banks using finance to deliver sustainable economic, social and environmental development. The GABV comprises 70+ financial institutions operating in 40 countries across Asia, Africa, Australia, Latin America, North America and Europe. Collectively they serve more than 60 million customers and hold over US$210 billion of combined assets under management. Learn more at www.gabv.org
In January 2021, G&C Mutual Bank became an Associate Member of the GABV, and is one of only four Australian banks (all mutual banks) to have attained membership in an international network of frontrunner organisations and leaders in the banking industry that use finance to serve people and the planet. We strive to deliver on our mission to provide our members and communities with highly valued products and services in a manner that is financially sustainable. The GABV promotes a positive, viable banking model that’s focused on meeting human needs and sustainability, which supports our brand ethos – Banking on your community.