Information on a Quito-based non-governmental organization named Fondo Ecuatoriano Populorum Progressio (FEPP, Ecuadorian Fund for Popular Progress) including who are its donors, what the funds are used for, methods of reporting expenditures and accounting procedures, whether funds must be relayed through or come from the Ecuadorian government, and on whether there have been scandals about the mismanagement of funds or corruption within the organization [ECU25386.E]

The following information was provided in an 11 March 1997 telephone interview with a United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) program officer based in Quito, Ecuador.

The Fondo Ecuatoriano para Progreso Popular, or as it is known by its official name in Latin, Fondo Ecuatoriano Populorum Progressio (FEPP, Ecuadorian Fund for Popular Progress) is one of the oldest and largest local non-governmental organizations in Ecuador, and has been in operation for over 30 years. A Catholic development agency, FEPP has a number of projects that focus on the areas of rural development, bilingual education, land tenure, health and women's issues. The source noted that FEPP does receive funds from outside the country, primarily from Europe.

The FEPP regularly issues annual reports and submits to external audits, which the source noted is not required by law. The source noted that in addition to these basic accounting procedures, expenditures must be justified on a project level and are subject to an internal monitoring system of expenses, which is reported to the board of directors and the external donors who are directly supporting the specific project. The source admitted that he had no further knowledge of FEPP's internal expenditure tracking and budget monitoring systems of FEPP. The source stated he was unaware of any reports or charges of corruption involving FEPP.

The FEPP does not jointly administer projects with, nor receive funds from, the Ecuadorian government, but prefers to cooperate with church- and community-based organizations who work directly with the communities that will be affected by a project. The source noted that although the FEPP had to collaborate with government ministries on their land tenure credit program, the program was structured so that funds were channelled directly to the communities in the form of credit, which was then used to negotiate the purchase of land and secure tenure from the appropriate state agencies and local land owners.

The following information was provided in an 11 March 1996 telephone interview with the director of Maquita Cushunchic Comercializado como Hermanos (MCCH), a Catholic community development organization headquartered in Quito, Ecuador, that is closely affiliated to FEPP. The director of FEPP currently sits on the board of directors of MCCH.

The source stated that the head office of FEPP is located in Quito, with Sr. Jose Tonello presently in the post of director. The source noted FEPP is a large funding agency that is direct and transparent in all of aspects of its operations. The source stated that a large percentage of funding comes from the Catholic Church and church-affiliated organizations in Latin America, Europe and North America. The source admitted he did not have knowledge about the accounting procedures of the organization, but stated that in his long association with the organization, he was unaware of any reports or charges of corruption involving the FEPP.

Economic Geography states that the FEPP is an organization strongly influenced by liberation theology (July 1993).

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the DIRB within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.


Economic Geography [Worcester, Mass.]. July 1993. Anthony Bebbington. "Modernization from Below: An Alternative Indigenous Development." (NEXIS)

Maquita Cushunchic Comercializado como Hermanos, Quito. 11 March 1996. Telephone interview with director.

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Quito. 11 March 1997. Telephone interview with program officer.