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1/1/2015 » 12/31/2015
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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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Center for Responsible Lending talks payday loans on NC Public Radio

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Wednesday, March 04, 2015

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

As the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau takes up the issue of payday lending, Diane Standaert of the Center for Responsible Lending spoke with The State of Things Host Frank Stasio about the harm payday lending causes, and why the CFPB is looking into the issue.

Standaert, the CRL's director of state policy, notes that payday loans prey on the most vulnerable individuals and families, including members of the Armed Forces. You may listen to the interview by clicking here.  

Tags:  Principle Seven 

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The 2015 CUaware Protégé Competition is coming soon!

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Wednesday, March 04, 2015
Updated: Tuesday, March 03, 2015

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

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

After a tremendously successful 2014, the CUaware Protégé Competition is set to unfold this spring and summer! Chapters will receive their information packets for the program in the weeks ahead, with the chapter-level contests taking place between April and September. Once winners are selected from participating chapters, the CUaware Protégé Competition finals will take place at the Leadership Conference in Myrtle Beach October 22-24.

The CUaware Protégé Competition is an opportunity for credit unions and chapters to: recognize the value and potential in rising professionals age 35 and under; enhance chapter programming and credit union interest; reinforce cooperative principles and credit union philosophy; and support CUaware and the league’s investment in developing leadership. 

Micah Smith of SC Telco FCU is the current CUaware Protégé. Smith, who serves as a member service specialist for the credit union, was one of six finalists who competed in 2014.

The program debuted as the Palmetto Protégé Competition in South Carolina in 2012 and was re-branded the CUaware Protégé Competition and expanded to include North Carolina in 2014.

"We hope that all 13 chapters in North Carolina and South Carolina will opt in to this terrific program," shared Carolinas Credit Union League President/CEO John Radebaugh. "CUaware Protégé casts a bright spotlight on the emerging crop of leaders in credit unions, is a great educational & professional development opportunity, and gives young professionals a great chance to showcase their talents and gifts."

Chapter leaders should look forward to receiving their information packets very soon. In the meantime, please contact Courtney Jackson or Jeff Hardin at the League with any questions about the CUaware Protégé Competition.

Tags:  CUaware Protégé  Principle Five  Principle Six 

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CUs encouraged to support CMN on Pancake Day

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Updated: Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Principle Seven: Concern for community. Since cooperatives are locally owned, they are committed to investing in the community.

IHOP National Pancake Day 2015 from CMN Hospitals on Vimeo.

Credit unions in North Carolina and South Carolina are encouraged to support Children's Miracle Network (CMN) on IHOP's Annual Pancake Day, which is Tuesday, March 3. Anyone dropping by a participating IHOP Restaurant on that day will receive a free short stack of pancakes. In return, diners will be encouraged to make a donation to CMN Hospitals or another designated local charity.

Since beginning Pancake Day 10 years ago, IHOP Restaurants have raised nearly $16 million in support of CMN and other local charities across the country. This year, IHOP hopes to raise $3.5 million dollars for charity during Pancake Day

According to CMN statistics, North Carolina and South Carolina raised more than $22,000 in 2014 through Pancake Day and the miracle balloon campaign. This result showed strong growth from the year before, when credit unions raised a combined $16,000 for CMN. 

Credit unions in the Carolinas have been strong supporters of CMN Hospitals in other ways as well. Upstate area credit unions gave generously to a Carolinas Credit Union Foundation (CCUF) project to renovate the lobby of the Greenville Health Systems Children's Hospital. This project is one of many CMN initiatives that the Upstate Chapter has supported through the years. 

Credit unions in both Carolinas also gave generously to the Levine Children's Hospital Rooftop Garden renovation project in 2012. This CCUF-lead initiative benefited the Levine Children's Hospital in Charlotte.

These are but two CMN projects that credit unions have generously invested in through the years. Pancake Day will once again offer an opportunity for credit union staff, volunteers and members to support a great cause, while getting a free food thank you! For complete event details, please click here.         

Tags:  Principle Seven 

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Self-Help credit building products featured in National Journal

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Monday, February 23, 2015

Principle Three:Member economic participation. The more members use the credit union, the more both the members and the cooperative benefit.

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

National Journal Reporter Nancy Cook recently spotlighted Self-Help Credit Union's Credit Builder and Wealth Builder loan products. The article details how a Self-Help member, John Corbin, was able to rid himself of burdensome credit card debt and eventually qualify for a mortgage from the credit union.

Corbin today owns a home in Canton, thanks to his commitment to paying off his credit card debt, and Self-Help, which paved the way for Corbin to build savings along the way. You may read this story by clicking here.


Tags:  Principle Five  Principle Three  Self-Help Credit Union 

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CUNA announces $1 million gift to expand Credit Union Museum

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Wednesday, February 18, 2015

(Editor's note: this post composed with information furnished by CUNA and America's Credit Union Museum.)


The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) has pledged to be the lead sponsor of the America’s Credit Union Museum “Legacy” Capital Campaign to help ensure the rich history of the credit union system is preserved for future generations.

Located in Manchester, New Hampshire on the site where America's first credit union opened its doors in 1908, America's Credit Union Museum has been in operation since 2002. True to credit union philosophy, the Museum is a cooperative resource celebrating the credit union movement’s past, present and future. The Legacy Campaign is a three-year capital campaign with a goal of raising $3.3 million to create a new industry research center, add additional exhibit space, and provide renovations to the existing Museum building.

CUNA’s $1 million pledge would fund what will be known as the “CUNA Research Center.” The Center will be housed in the building next to America’s Credit Union Museum and will create a virtual experience that will provide credit unions, consumers, the media, lawmakers, regulators, and others the ability to delve into the history of credit unions. The new Center will allow every credit union the opportunity to tell its unique story virtually through the Museum. The Museum and Research Center will eventually be connected via a Sky Walk.

“Conserving and promulgating credit union history is consistent with our mission of supporting, protecting, unifying and advancing the credit union movement,” said Jim Nussle, president and CEO of CUNA, the nation’s largest credit union trade association. “CUNA is proud to participate in this project, which has the potential to ultimately preserve for future generations the roots and growth of the credit union legacy in America, particularly as we strive to achieve our system vision of ‘American’s best choice for financial services.’”

America’s Credit Union Museum Chairman, Michael L'Ecuyer, thanked CUNA for not only its financial pledge, but its partnership in preserving the tradition and history of the credit union system. “CUNA has long supported the preservation of the history of the credit union movement in our country. Through this generous pledge to the Legacy Campaign, the Museum will be able to continue telling the story of our heritage, principles and values and providing future generations a link to the rich past of credit unions in America.”

CUNA’s pledge puts the Legacy Campaign more than half-way towards its fundraising goal. America’s Credit Union Museum Executive Director Stephanie Smith will be focused on raising funds to fulfil the remainder of the goal. Stephanie stressed that supporting this campaign right now is crucial. “Credit union leaders are retiring from our movement every single day. With them is going the knowledge of the past and the stories that have shaped credit union values. We need the support of credit unions and credit union partners to help us preserve and protect the history and heritage that explains why credit unions are different and unique both in the communities in which we do business and in the eyes of our elected officials.”

The Museum’s Board and Staff is committed to evolving the Museum into a strategic planning destination, a beacon of the cooperative spirit of credit unions, and an ongoing entity that ensures the history of credit unions is told loudly and proudly for decades to come, said Smith. She said the new CUNA Research Center adds the virtual component which will allow that history to be accessed in a much more accessible way.

 The site of the museum honors the formation of the nation's first credit union. In November 1908, a group of French-speaking mill workers in Manchester, New Hampshire pooled their resources together to form the nation's first credit union. La Caisse Populaire, Ste-Marie (People's Bank of St. Mary) remains in operation today as St. Mary's Bank Credit Union.  

Tags:  America's Credit Union Museum  Credit union history 

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