Monday, August 15, 2011

Monday, August 15: Ramune and Karen meet with the Mungunbiileg CU

Today we had our first session with the Mungunbiileg CU. Karen and I met with three ladies from their Board of Directors: Inkchin, Tumro and Soogee (I apologize in advance for my feeble attempts at spelling Mongolian names).

They presented the history of their CU and some of its structure. The remainder of the day was spent asking more detailed questions about their practices and procedures, membership base and future plans.

We began relaying some information which they found particularly interesting: promotion of children’s savings accounts, risk-rating models and risk-based pricing.

Working in Mongolia is a funny thing. Although Tuul is doing a fabulous job, I am sure that some things get lost in translation. For example, Karen or I will say 1 sentence and then Tuul will translate, speaking for 2 or 3 minutes. Alternately, we will ask a question, Tuul will relay it to the Board. The Board will then discuss it rather passionately for 5 minutes, and Tuul will respond “Yes” to us. It’s hilarious to think about, sometimes.

After a brief tour of the Sainshand city post-dinner, we went back to our dark hotel rooms. The electricity had been out since approx. 1 pm. So, to keep ourselves busy, we did some yoga. Tuul was interested and wanted me to show her some of the yoga that I do back home. So Karen supervised and commented on our form (from her water yoga experience), while we wriggled and balanced and downward-dogged in my candlelit room. Considering the A/C wasn’t working, it was a pretty good replication of a hot/moksha yoga experience!

-- Ramune Jonusonis

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