REGINA, SASKATCHEWAN--(Marketwired - Oct. 15, 2013) - National Co-op Week is a chance to celebrate how credit union values result in a better banking experience.
"We are reminding people how credit unions are unique because of our co-operative principles and values" said Keith Nixon, CEO of SaskCentral, the service organization for Saskatchewan's 53 credit unions. "Financial success isn't their only priority; they are also focused on making sure their members have a voice, contributing to their communities and treating their employees well."
Credit unions are co-operatives which means every member has a vote. Members can vote for or even run for the board of directors who lead the strategic direction of each credit union.
"By choosing a credit union, members can feel good about how their money is being managed," says Nixon. "Their impact is local, which means funds on deposit are turned into loans within the same area, improving the financial wellbeing of the families, businesses and individuals living in communities throughout Saskatchewan."
Credit unions give back to communities as a matter of co-operative principle. This giving takes the form of patronage dividends to members and donations, in kind contributions and volunteer hours to local charities and non-profit organizations. In 2012, credit unions returned $16 million in patronage dividends to their members. Community giving amounted to $6 million. Credit union fundraising brought in more than $500,000 for causes like the Children's Hospital Foundation of Saskatchewan, Red Cross Disaster Relief, Terry Fox Run and Telemiracle. Credit union employees logged nearly 30,000 hours of volunteer time for community organizations.
Credit unions celebrate International Credit Union Day on October 17, 2013 as part of national Co-op Week, October 13-19, 2013.
Saskatchewan Credit Union Quick Facts
(as of December 31, 2012 unless otherwise indicated)
- Today there are 53 credit unions in Saskatchewan serving 255 communities through 288 service outlets.
- Credit unions offer financial products and services to more than 502,000 members.
- Saskatchewan credit union assets reached $16.9 billion with revenue of over $815 million.
- Credit union lending amounts to $12.9 billion.
- Over 500 board members are locally elected by members of each credit union to provide strategic direction to their management teams.
- As independent financial institutions owned and controlled by their members, credit unions are shaped by community needs. Saskatchewan credit unions range in asset size from $16 million to more than $4 billion.
- In 2012, Saskatchewan credit unions returned $16 million to their members in the form of patronage equity contribution and dividends.
- Credit unions are a major contributor to Saskatchewan's economy, employing more than 3,500 people.
- In 2012, Saskatchewan credit unions contributed over $76,000 to international development projects to help co-operatives and credit unions in other countries.
- Funds held on deposit in Saskatchewan credit unions are fully guaranteed through the Credit Union Deposit Guarantee Corporation. The full guarantee is made possible through a comprehensive deposit protection regime that is focused on prevention. Read more about the guarantee (http://www.saskcu.com/pages/Fully%20Guaranteed.aspx).