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Christian Economic Development Institute Empowers the Poor


July 13, 2005

Five Talents International
P.O. Box 331
Vienna, VA 22183

Contact: Craig Cole, Executive Director, (703) 242-6016 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Christian Economic Development Institute Empowers the Poor

Vienna, Virginia - A Christian Economic Development Institute, sponsored by the Chalmers Center for Economic Development at Covenant College, Five Talents International, and Uganda Christian University will be held from August 1 – 6, 2005 at Uganda Christian University in Mukono, Uganda. Using both experienced teachers and real-world practitioners, the Institute will equip churches, missionaries, and Christian ministries with church-centered strategies and methodologies that have the potential to bring about economic development and spiritual transformation in low-income communities.

The advanced course will provide attendees with hands-on training and interactive discussions with real-world practitioners. The training focuses on choosing the appropriate microenterprise development intervention, savings-led microfinance programs, rotating savings and credits associations, partnering with microfinance institutions, and offering small business training to low-income entrepreneurs. Following the training, attendees will create and submit an action plan to help the poor in their communities become financially self-sufficient. The Institute faculty will critique these plans so that attendees are effectively prepared to implement the plan in their communities.

Established in 1999, Five Talents International has provided funding for technical assistance and thousands of loans of $50 to $300 to entrepreneurs in 12 countries in Africa, Central and South America, and Asia. Each loan finances a business that in turn employs at least five other people. A majority of the loan recipients are women. Its ongoing ministry, which combines business micro-lending with spiritual development, is supported by a staff based at the Church of the Holy Comforter in Vienna, VA and by dozens of volunteers from churches across the United States.