What is the legal structure of Zebunet?
ZEBUNET is a non-profit, non-political and non-confessional association under the « 1901 l=Law » for Franch association. It registered to the Franch authority on 19 July 2001 and a public annoucncement published in the Journal Officiel of 11 August 2001.
Who is running Zebunet?
The impulse is given by the President and the Board of Directors. They meet 3 to 4 times a year to define the main orientations of the association. These are then translated into projects by the Bureau at monthly meetings. The projects are implemented and monitored by an employee, the coordinator, and a team of active volunteers who each take part in some of the activities.
Who are the volunteers?
Volunteers are people who want to give a little of their time to Zebunet. Each with different skills (accounting, IT, administration, communication, agricultural development, etc.), they take part in some of the activities, from home or at the headquarters. Most of them are still working and can only devote a limited amount of time to Zebunet (3 to 5 hours per week). There are also a few retired or unemployed people who can give more time (5 to 10 hours per week). Despite a "dominant majority" in Paris, volunteers are spread all over France!
And in the countries of intervention?
In countries where we carry out microcredit activities, Zebunet has a local volunteer representative who keeps the bank account and ensures the financial follow-up of the projects. The operational aspects (selection of beneficiaries, credits, purchase of animals, veterinary follow-up, etc.) are managed by our local partners (associations or NGOs) in relation with the coordinator in Paris. Partners’ work is compensated by interest paid by the farmers.
Where do Zebunet's funds come from?
Zebunet's funds come mainly from membership fees and subscriptions to PEAs (Animal Savings Accounts). Since 2009, Zebunet has also been able to count on the support of private or public institutions to help finance its activities.
How are the funds used?
Memberships, as well as 5 euros from each PEA, cover the administrative costs of the headquarters and the coordinator's salary. The PEAs are used to finance successive loans in developing countries as well as support projects such as biogas, agroforestry, etc.
How to check that the funds are being used properly?
If you are traveling, you are welcome to visit the animal and family you supported through a PEA.
Online, you can check our accounts which are always available on our website. These accounts are also sent to active members at the time of the General Assembly each year.
You will notice that our operating expenses at headquarters are limited, we have only one employee who coordinates all our activities, and the main administrative functions are carried out in France and in the countries by volunteers.
Why does the farmer pay interest?
ZEBUNET, while trying to reach the most vulnerable rural strata, does not wish to give charity to farmers, but wishes to initiate a positive dynamic. The existence of these interests, even at a low rate, makes it possible to select motivated people whom we help to develop a profitable economic activity. The interests are used to cover the costs of our local partners who monitor microcredits and livestock activities.
What is the interest rate in the countries?
Interest rates vary according to the country, the type of animal financed and the partner. This money goes entirely to the partner to ensure the implementation and monitoring of the loans and activities. A rate is therefore defined in collaboration with its team, depending on the profitability of the livestock financed, the local inflation rate and the monitoring needs. They are currently set between 0 and 12%, annually decreasing.
What is a PEA?
The Animal Savings Account (Plan Epargne Animal in French) symbolizes the help you, as a northern investor, give to a farmer in the South by financing the loan that will allow him to buy an animal. Depending on the animal being raised, it will be called a PEC (Pig Savings Account), a PEZ (Zébu Savings Account), a PEP (Hen Savings Account), a PEBROC (Sheep or Goat Savings Account), a PECAN (Duck Savings Account), or even a PEAK (Donkey and Kassin Savings Account). Each PEA is defined by an amount (price of the animal purchased) and a duration (repayment period of the loan made to the breeder). During the life of the PEA, the subscriber is informed of the progress of the project to which he or she has contributed. At maturity, when the loan is repaid by the farmer, the future of the money will be different depending on the option that the subscriber initially chose, donor or investor.
Does joining or donating to Zebunet entitle you to a tax deduction?
Zebunet is an association of general interest and as such, we are authorized to issue tax deduction receipts for tax payer in France. For individuals, membership, donations and PEAs subscribed under the "donor" status give the right to a tax deduction receipt which allows them to benefit from a tax reduction equivalent to 66% of the total payment. For a company, the same tax receipt entitles it to a tax reduction equivalent to 60% of the payment, up to a limit of 0.5% of its turnover excluding tax.
For non-French tax payer, the best is to check with your local tax administration if you can benefit from any reduction by donating to a French association.
What is the difference between "investor" and "donor"?
- Donor :
By opting for this status, the Member agrees, as soon as he subscribes to his Animal Savings Account (PEA), to donate the amount of his subscription to Zebunet and its projects.
The amount repaid by the farmer at the end of his loan will go to Zebunet, which will use it for other projects for the benefit of livestock farmers or merchants.
The Member will receive a tax deduction receipt for the amount of the amount paid for the PEA(s).
This tax deduction receipt will allow him to benefit from a tax reduction (66% for an individual, 60% for a company) for the year of payment.
- Investor :
This status allows the Member to choose, at the end of his Animal Savings Plan, when the farmer reimbursed it, what to do with its investment. He/she will be offer to choose between one of the following options:
1. Be reimbursed in local currency in the country concerned.
2. Donate the money to an individual or organization of your choice in that country.
3. Subscribe a new PEA in the same country. To do this, the Member must be up to date with his membership fee, and if necessary, make an additional payment if the amount of the new PEA is higher than the amount already paid. The reinvestment of a PEA is only possible once.
4. Donate the amount of the PEA to ZEBUNET, which will retain the funds for the development of other microcredit or livestock support projects.
Important: if a PEA is subscribed with an "investor" status, and at the end of the project you donate it to Zebunet, we will not be able to give you a tax receipt, as these can only be issued the year following the donation.
Why can the animal allocation process take time?
To launch a project, Zebunet pre-finances all loans. We then open subscriptions on our website in order to quickly cover this cash advance. However, it is still necessary for our partner to carry out the first training sessions, buy the animals, visit each beneficiary and send us the photos before we can proceed with the allocations. That is why, depending on the stage of the project at the time of your subscription, it can take between 1 week and 2 months.
What does the ZOB have to do with Zebunet?
Gérard Feldzer, pilot at Air France, was enthusiastic about the microcredit project applied to livestock farming, an original idea of Stéphane Geay, owner of the ZOB (ZEBU OVERSEAS BOARD). Gérard participated for a while in the ZOB projects then separated from it to create, with Hanh, of Vietnamese origin, and with the agreement of Stéphane, Zebunet, a French association under the 1901 Law. Zebunet's first project was in Vietnam in collaboration with VSF, (now AVSF) who help us learn how to be effective in our action.