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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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Recapping the top 10 Seven Principles Blog stories from 2015

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Monday, December 28, 2015
Updated: Monday, December 21, 2015

With more than 80 posts shared this year, the Seven Principles Blog has covered a number of stories that encapsulate the seven cooperative principles that guide the credit union movement. From Concern for Community (Principle Seven) to Democratic Member Control (Principle Two) and Education & Training (Principle Five), the blog aims to continue sharing the impact credit unions make in the Carolinas.

As the last post in 2015, it only felt right to sum up this year’s experiences by sharing the top ten stories that you, the readers, cared about most.

The League looks forward to sharing more of the community news you enjoy in 2016 and is excited to announce that a new blog will be joining our lineup (Drumroll, please). Aptly titled, The Bridge, this blog will share the stories of the larger cooperative industry in North and South Carolina, from consumer cooperatives like food co-ops and electrical co-ops, to worker cooperatives like farmers co-ops. It is envisioned as a single landing spot for cooperative news in the Carolinas! Stay tuned for more on this in 2016.

Thank you and Have a Happy New Year!


1. 2014 CUaware Protégés benefiting from mentor program (posted March 30, 2015)

In 2014, six chapter-level winners participated in the CUaware Protégé Competition. From the written tests and public speaking engagements at the chapter level, to the finals at the Leadership Conference, each contestant described the CUaware Protégé Competition as quite a learning experience. That learning experience has continued into 2015, as five of the six chapter winners have been paired with a credit union mentor... Continue Reading »

2. League, credit unions produce Seven Cooperative Principles video (posted June 24, 2015)

CCUL joined forces with credit union voices from both Carolinas to create a Seven Cooperative Principles educational video. The video made its debut on June 15 during the CCUL Annual Meeting. "We wanted to create a video that would relate each of the “Principles” in terms that were more familiar… Continue Reading »

3. Scholarships available for the Principles & Philosophy Conference (posted May 21, 2015)

Through the support of credit unions and credit union organizations, the League was able to offer 10 scholarships this year to staff persons from credit unions with $125 million or less in assets to attend the 2015 Principles & Philosophy Conference, held November 1-3 in beautiful downtown Greenville, SC. Continue Reading »

4. CU Lunch Local is less than two months away (posted August 21, 2015)

We've had a long, hot summer in the Carolinas but fall is just around the corner -- and CU Lunch Local is now less than two months away! Credit unions in both South Carolina and North Carolina participated in CU Lunch Local this past year. The initiative, which is aimed at supporting locally-owned small businesses, is held each year during International Credit Union Week… Continue Reading »

5. Guest Post: Greenville Children's Hospital shares impact of Upstate Chapter (posted February 9, 2015)

Dianne Dillon, Children's Miracle Network Coordinator for the Greenville Health System, shares the positive impact the Upstate Chapter of Credit Unions has made on the GHS Children’s Hospital. In addition to raising funds for the hospital, the Upstate Chapter adopted a Miracle Family and is providing encouragement to Madison Wilson (the patient) and her family... Continue Reading »

6. Guest post: What I learned at the Principles & Philosophy Conference (posted November 18, 2015)

Latitude 32 Credit Union’s Marcus Rhymer share the top ten things he learned at the 2015 Principles & Philosophy Conference. Rhymer: “While this conference had many components of a traditional conference format, a few things differed. This conference became a deep dive into the foundation of the credit union principles and philosophies which included full engagement from all participants...” Continue Reading »

7. CUaware Triad group REACHes to host volunteer event (posted July 14, 2015)

The Carolinas Credit Union Foundation introduced the Reach program at the beginning of 2015. The premise of Reach is to take the experiences of Victory Junction Camp on the road to Children’s Hospitals, Ronald McDonald Houses, and anywhere else where children and their families are gathered for an extended time of recovery. In July, CUaware partnered with the Foundation to serve as volunteers for the daylong Winston-Salem event at the Ronald McDonald House. Continue Reading »

8. SC Telco's Koy Stone wins CUaware Protégé Chapter Competition (posted August 13, 2015)

SC Telco Federal Credit Union’s Koy Stone is named as one of the seven finalists to compete in the 2015 CUaware Protégé Competition finals. He won the Upstate chapter-level competition Tuesday evening, August 11… Continue Reading »

9. Members CU’s Tanya Council wins Northwest Chapter CUaware Protégé Competition (posted August 21, 2015)

Members Credit Union’s Tanya Council is named as one of the seven finalists to compete in the 2015 CUaware Protégé Competition finals. She emerged as the Northwest Chapter's finalist in a field of five candidates... Continue Reading »

10. Credit unions support CU Lunch Local (posted October 19, 2015)

In a video recap, CCUL spotlights the many credit unions that participated in CU Lunch Local on Tuesday, October 13. Staff and members at participating credit unions fanned out to local restaurants in order to support local business and call attention to credit unions as locally-owned financial institutions that care about the community… Continue Reading »

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Triad CUaware Council celebrates holidays in - style?

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Monday, December 14, 2015
Updated: Monday, December 14, 2015

Jon Hamby (Members CU) of the
CUaware Triad Council in a lighted (and
ugly) sweater.

The CUaware Triad Council capped off an eventful and successful 2015 with an ugly sweater contest. The event attracted 18 people from six credit unions and credit union organizations.

This is the second year the Triad Council donned ugly sweaters to ring in the holidays. This year, the event took place at 66 Pizzeria. 

Heather Hicks (Truliant FCU) won the competition for ugliest sweater. Hicks won a certificate of achievement and gift card from Starbucks. 

While the Council is taking the rest of the year off to spend with family and friends, plans are already in place to meet in 2016! The Council will hold a lunch and learn event on February 17. Save the date - and Happy Holidays!

Tags:  CUaware 

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CUaware to hold first meeting in Columbia January 12

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Friday, December 04, 2015
Updated: Friday, December 04, 2015

Zach DeMoya (Palmetto Citizens FCU), the 2015
Columbia Chapter CUaware Protégé, is
organizing the January event in Columbia.

If you live and work in the Columbia area, circle January 12 on your calendar and make plans to attend the first-ever CUaware meeting in the Midlands. The event takes place beginning at 6:15 pm at Jillians of Columbia (800 Gervais Street).

CUaware is a council with the Carolinas Credit Union League created to fill a gap that exists within the credit union industry: the very people that work in credit unions don’t know they work for the best kept secret! CUaware aims to informally introduce all levels of credit union employees (and industry folks) to the CU Movement.

Zach DeMoya of Palmetto Citizens Federal Credit Union, the 2015 Columbia Chapter CUaware Protégé, is organizing the event. It is intended to be a relaxing evening of networking, but with a longer-term goal of engaging credit union employees with the broader community. "We hope to use our strength in numbers to work on volunteer projects together, hear from guest speakers that offer different perspectives than we typically hear in our credit unions, and learn how we can work together to help everyone in the community realize their financial potential," DeMoya said.

If your 2016 goals include having a greater impact in your credit union career, make plans to join your friends at this event! For more information, please contact Zach DeMoya

Tags:  CUaware 

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CUaware Triangle volunteers for Habitat for Humanity

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Monday, November 30, 2015
Updated: Monday, November 30, 2015

Many people call the holidays the Season of Giving, and for credit unions it is an opportunity to give thanks by giving back to the community. Ten volunteers with the Triangle CUaware group kicked off the Season of Giving in style by rolling up their sleeves and working on a Habitat for Humanity home in south Raleigh.

The day-long volunteer initiative took place on Saturday, November 21. The CUaware group worked with a Habitat for Humanity employee on-site to assist in the construction of a home. The volunteers did general work including caulking, sealing off the attic and installing vinyl siding.

"Volunteering at Habitat truly opened my eyes," shared Sara Portis (Coastal FCU), who helped to coordinate the volunteer event on behalf of CUaware. "It was wonderful to meet the home owner, hear his story, help him build a new future, and to top it off, learn some home building skills. It's a cause I think everyone should support," Portis said.

After a productive day working on the home, the volunteers helped clean up the site and secure all the tools and building materials. The small home is expected to be completed in mid-December - just in time for he new homeowner to share the holidays with his family.   

Tags:  CUaware 

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Customized Cooperative Principles training available for credit union staff

Posted By Jeff Hardin, Friday, November 20, 2015

The Seven Cooperative Principles form the basis for how credit unions operate. From the principles of member-ownership and democracy to the commitment to concern for community, the principles help credit union employees and volunteers understand the credit union's role in the financial services marketplace.

The League offers custom Seven Cooperative Principles training modules to credit unions in South Carolina and North Carolina. The training ranges from one hour to a full day depending upon the needs of your staff and/or directors, and can be developed to specifically address the history and role of your cooperative. 

"In 2015, the League provided Seven Cooperative Principles of varying lengths to more than 250 credit union employees in the Carolinas," shared Jeff Hardin, the director of cooperative initiatives, who facilitates the training events. "The League is committed to providing this training because we strongly believe these principles differentiate credit unions in the marketplace."

The training is very affordable, with the cost of the training donated to a Credit Union Development Educator (CUDE) Scholarship Fund at the Carolinas Credit Union Foundation. "This scholarship fund is used to send credit union staff members to the Principles & Philosophy Conference as well as the national CUDE program, so it's a great investment for not only your staff but the entire movement," said Hardin.

Please contact Jeff Hardin at (919) 457-9063 if you would like to learn more about these sessions or to schedule a training at your credit union in 2016. 

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