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5/26/2015
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Seven Principles Blog
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In 1844, a small group of weavers from Rochdale, England created the blueprint for how their newly-formed cooperative would operate and serve the local community. These values, known as the Seven Cooperative Principles, serve as the operating guidebook for credit unions and cooperatives throughout the world. This blog was created to honor that legacy and to showcase the everyday efforts of credit unions in the Carolinas that embody the cooperative mission and purpose.

 

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Guest post: how the Principles & Philosophy Conference impacted me

Posted By Jeff Hardin, 22 hours ago
Updated: Yesterday

Principle Five: Education, training, and information. Credit unions educate and train members, employees and volunteers so they can contribute effectively to the development of the credit union. In addition, credit unions provide financial education for their members and the public.

(Editor's note: thanks to the generosity of credit unions and credit union organizations, scholarships to attend the Principles & Philosophy Conference are made available each year. Chris Poole of Vision Financial FCU attended the conference on a scholarship in 2014. Poole shares his experience in this guest post.)  

I was a participant in the 2014 Principles and Philosophy Conference which took place at Graylyn International Conference Center in Winston-Salem, NC. If it were not for the generosity of the donors which allowed me to receive a scholarship, I would not have been awarded this opportunity. Before I continue, I would just like to thank those many donors for giving me the opportunity to experience what credit union culture is all about!

Before attending the Principles and Philosophy Conference, I really didn’t know much about the credit union legacy or that working within a credit union would have such an emphasis on helping people. However, after attending this awesome two and a half day conference, I learned that credit unions must convey nine cooperative principles. A few of those principles include, “Democratic Member Control”; “Concern for Community”; and “Cooperation Among Cooperatives”.

One of the awesome things about the above conference experience is that, during the conference there were so many networking opportunities. I met so many knowledgeable individuals who have been working within the credit union arena for quite some time. No matter what one’s position within his/her credit union is or what his/her goals to improve the quality of our movement may be, we all stand united and have the same end result in mind-at least that will be the case after attending this conference!

I encourage anyone who has the opportunity to attend this conference, to do so. After attending this conference, one should attend the CUDE (Credit Union Development Educators) training - that is my next big journey within the credit union movement!

Tags:  Principle Five 

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Western Chapter tournament raises nearly $10,000

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Yesterday
Updated: Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Principle Six: Cooperation among cooperatives. Credit unions work together to improve services to members and build sustainable communities.

Principle Seven: Concern for community. Since credit unions are locally owned financial institutions, they are committed to investing in the community.


Photos from the Western Chapter Golf Tournament, held near
Hendersonville, NC May 12, 2015.

The Western Chapter of Credit Unions raised nearly $10,000 for Eblen Charities during its first-ever golf tournament, The event, which drew 90 golfers to Etowah Valley Golf Club near Hendersonville, took place May 12, 2015.

"We're thrilled at the support for this event and for Eblen," said Chapter President Susan Holliday (Ecusta CU). "The funds raised help to ensure that school children in western North Carolina, who would otherwise have to do without, get access to snacks during the school day."

The chapter had never taken on a golf tournament as a charitable project before. "Steve Clark did a great job leading the chapter board's efforts over the last several months, and everybody pitched in beautifully," Holliday added. Clark (United FCU) also worked closely with Etowah Valley to ensure that the golf tournament delivered a great experience for the teams and players who participated in the charitable event.

The proceeds from the golf tournament, combined with the ongoing fundraising events of the chapter, bring the total support for Eblen Charities to $13,000 this year. These funds support the Food for Thought program, a long-time chapter project. The Food for Thought program works within the local school systems to provide food for local children and their families. In addition to financial support, several credit unions in the chapter assist with distribution of the snacks. 

Operating under the premise that children cannot learn if they are hungry, Food for Thought serves hundreds of children each year. In addition to the Western Chapter, Food for Thought is supported by the Manna Food Bank, Ingles Markets and a variety of other local community groups. Thanks to their combined efforts, tens of thousands of snacks will be provided to local children at no cost who may not be able to bring snacks to school.

Tags:  Principle Seven  Principle Six  Western Chapter 

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Scholarships available for the Principles & Philosophy Conference

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Yesterday
Updated: Yesterday

Principle Five: Education, training, and information. Credit unions educate and train members, employees and volunteers so they can contribute effectively to the development of the credit union. In addition, credit unions provide financial education for their members and the public.

Principle Six: Cooperation among cooperatives. Credit unions serve their members most effectively and strengthen the cooperative principles by working with other cooperatives through local, state, regional, national, and international structures.

Scholarship applications are now being accepted for the 2015 Principles & Philosophy Conference, to be held November 1-3 in beautiful downtown Greenville, SC. This year, credit unions and credit union organizations have donated funds to provide 10 scholarships to attend this unique and foundational professional development event. 

Applicants - please note the following guidelines: 

  • Credit union staff at credit unions $125 million in assets and below only;
  • You must commit to attending the entire conference;
  • Your CEO or a Credit Union Development Educator on staff must write a letter of recommendation; and
  • Applications must be received by August 31, 2015.

The application form is available here. Please direct any questions to Jeff Hardin at the League, or to Deborah Perkins-Futch (Duke FCU), the Scholarship Committee Chair.

Tags:  Principle Five  Principle Six 

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CUaware Lowcountry volunteers at local shelter

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Wednesday, May 20, 2015
Updated: Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Lowcountry credit unions joined forces to volunteer at Eagle Harbor
Ranch in Summerville May 12. Volunteers painted and assembled a
horse fence at the shelter for young people.

Principle Six: Cooperation among cooperatives. Credit unions work together to improve services to members and build sustainable communities.

Principle Seven: Concern for community. Since credit unions are locally owned financial institutions, they are committed to investing in the community.  

More than 20 credit union volunteers from Lowcountry credit unions joined forces to volunteer at Eagle Harbor Ranch on May 12. The project, which included painting and updating the Eagle Harbor facilities, is part of CUaware's focus on volunteerism this month.

"We had a great turnout and accomplished a lot during our time together," shared CUaware Lowcountry Council Member Stephanie Ownby (South Carolina FCU). "It was great to be able to showcase our cooperative spirit for such a wonderful organization."

In addition to painting the barn and house on the property, volunteers also assembled a horse fence. All told, credit union volunteers in the group each gave six hours of service to Eagle Harbor Ranch.  

Located in Summerville, Eagle Harbor Ranch’s mission is to “be a place of refuge and shelter for children ages 4 to 21 who are orphaned, neglected, abused and abandoned. It is the organization's desire to empower each child to rise above their past through love, structure and an opportunity to succeed in life.”

In addition to rolling up their sleeves and assisting Eagle Harbor with painting and other touch-up projects, other credit unions and credit union professionals unable to attend the event donated needed items to the organization. The Lowcountry Council will next hold a networking and social event over the summer. For more information on how you can get involved, please contact Stephanie Ownby.    

Tags:  CUaware  Principle Seven  Principle Six 

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Summit CU sponsorship benefits women entrepreneurs

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Tuesday, May 19, 2015
Updated: Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Principle Five: Education, training, and information. Credit unions provide financial education to their members as well as the communities they serve.

Principle Seven: Concern for community.
Since credit unions are locally owned financial institutions, they are committed to investing in the community.  

 
 Heather Pendrak (left) and Destiny
Riley won prizes at the Summit
CU-sponsored "PitchPocalypse"
event.
Heather Pendrak, a local high school teacher, won first place in ReBuildUp, LLC's “PitchPocalypse” business plan contest held at Greensboro Central Library on Sunday, May 17th. Summit Credit Union sponsored the contest. Heather's winning idea was for a 3D scanning company that scans finished goods for furniture market clients and others creating files that can easily be printed out using 3D printers.

As the first place winner, she will be receiving $200 for her new company, one year membership to the Greensboro Chamber of Commerce, three months of accounting help from Michael Robinson Accounting, LLC., and access to Elon's Business Clinic.

Second place went to Destiny Riley, a rising Senior at UNCG, for her startup specializing in replacing toxic nail products with safer ones for area salons. She won $100 along with Greensboro Chamber membership, three months of accounting help, and legal assistance from Elon's Business Clinic.

Both entrepreneurs now move on to ReBuildUp's “Startup Test Flight” three month class to test out their business concepts in the real world. Once completed, both become eligible for micro loans up to $5,000 each from the Greensboro Community Development Fund.

Michael Norbury, Manager of ReBuildUp, LLC says: “We've found that micro lenders who offer their own pre-loan business education courses still end up with candidates lacking real world entrepreneur experience. Our Startup Program has been designed to provide this missing piece for applicants.”

To qualify for the PitchPocalypse, Heather and Destiny took part in the “ReBuildUp Course” held the day before at the Central Branch Library. During the four hour course, they joined others in playing a series of business mini-games that focused on economic fundamentals, idea development, and marketing tricks. The ReBuildUp Course, PitchPocalypse, and Startup Test Flight make up ReBuildUp, LLC's “Startup Program” that helps aspiring teen and adult entrepreneurs test the waters of small business for a three month period with monetary, networking, accounting, and legal filing assistance.

ReBuildUp plans to hold the next ReBuildUp Course and PitchPocalypse in late July at Greensboro Central Library.

Tags:  Principle Five  Principle Seven  Summit CU 

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