Last year, Erste Group’s Social Banking provided a total of EUR 53 million in loans to starting entrepreneurs, microfinance businesses and social organizations, as well as to people in financial difficulties across CEE. Social Banking financed more than 1,400 clients and helped another 4,600 clients to improve their financial literacy by offering them business trainings and education support. In total, Social Banking supported more than 10,000 clients in 2020.
“In 2020, we proved that we stand by our clients with financing and advisory also in the uneasy times. We will definitely continue supporting the people in our region as they deal with the consequences of the Covid-19 crisis, such as increasing unemployment, the growing risk of poverty, as well as challenges connected with affordable housing,” says Peter Surek, Head of Social Banking Development at Erste Group.
Serving society and driving social development in CEE
Social Banking units in all seven of Erste Group’s banking markets support people at risk of poverty by fostering job creation via the financing of starting and micro entrepreneurs and by empowering social organizations to help more beneficiaries. Social Banking’s programs for people in financial difficulties provide special advisory and financial solutions to distressed individuals and families and help guide them out of over-indebtedness. Furthermore, Social Banking’s pilot projects in the area of social housing test innovative approaches to facilitate access to affordable and decent housing for marginalized communities.
Since its foundation, Erste Group’s Social Banking invested nearly EUR 400 million in loans into the social development in the CEE region, serving a total of 36,000 clients across the region, creating more than 15,000 jobs and preserving more than 30,000 of them. With its initiatives and projects, Social Banking also makes a valuable contribution to the fulfillment of 9 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that the United Nations’ member states have set for themselves by 2030.
Further information on Erste Group’s Social Banking can be found here.