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1st January 2010

Living and Working in the village of Peyia

Its been a great morning. First thing, I met with the new general manager of Peyia Co-op Bank, Stephanos who, as well as being a friend of ours, is a totally lovely local man.

Things were going well until the Mayor needed an urgent word about a village project, so I had to leave the office and take a seat in the reception for a while. (I didn’t mind: firstly, I’m a woman so a man takes priority (yeah, like I REALLY believe that!!) and secondly, I’m nosey so it gave me time to look around at the staff and the clients!).

Anyway, Stephanos and I discussed the world in general before getting down to the serious business of what our business needed and how the Co-op bank could help.

Of course, this is Cyprus, so I couldn’t just ask the questions without listening to Stephanos proudly telling me how much the bank does for the community of Peyia and the surrounding areas – and where it all started…..

In 1939, the Co-op in Peyia began by lending 10cyp maximum to local people so they could buy a donkey. The security for the loan, was land….. donkeys were very precious then and the bank was able to fund the growth of the farming as well as funding towards the locals drilling for much needed water. It was totally fascinating learning about our beloved village!

Now of course, land is still big business but the developers have taken most of it, making the grandchildren of the generation of farmers with donkeys, very wealthy and seeing donkies replaced by sleek Mercedes Benz!

I don’t need a donkey but I’d like one: don’t know what the dogs and cats would think about it though.

The Co-op also puts a % of its profit back into Peyia, which means a lot to us – and we’d be proud to contribute so, be prepared for a lot of changes in how this company does its banking!…..

Watch this space with interest!!