KNOW YOUR CREDIT UNION
WHAT IS A CREDIT UNION?
A credit union is a member-owned financial co-operative whose motto is “Not for profit but for service”.
WHEN WAS MY CREDIT UNION STARTED?
Your Credit Union was registered on August 16th, 1982 under the Co-operative Societies Ordinance of 1958.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
It means that there is legislation in place to protect members and guide the operation of the organization.
WHO IS THE GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL RESPONSIBLE FOR OVERSEEING REGULATIONS OF THE CREDIT UNION?
The Supervisor of Co-operatives in the office of the Financial Services Regulatory Commission (FSRC), operating under the Ministry of Finance and the Economy, holds this responsibility.
HOW IS MY CREDIT UNION STRUCTURED?
At the helm of the organization there is the Membership. According to our By Laws the highest deciding body of the Credit Union is a general meeting of the membership – “the supreme authority of the Society shall be vested in the general meeting of members at which every member has a right to attend and vote on all questions.”
The Organisation Chart from top to bottom, is as follows:
- The Management Committee or Board of Directors – 7 persons maximum
- The Credit Committee – 5 persons maximum
- The Supervisory & Compliance Committee – 5 persons maximum
- Management Team consisting of the General Manager and all other Department Managers
- Office Staff
IS MY CREDIT UNION AFFILIATED WITH ANY OTHER BODY?
Yes. Your Credit union is a member of the Antigua and Barbuda Co-operative League Limited (ABCL) with offices located at Mahogany Place (corner of Mahogany Drive and Lauchland Benjamin Drive), Woods Centre, St. John’s. The League is, in turn, affiliated with the Caribbean Confederation of Credit Unions (CCCU fondly called “Triple CU”) with head offices in St. Kitts. The Confederation is affiliated with the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) whose offices are based in Canada. The Credit Union Movement is worldwide.
DID MY CREDIT UNION ALWAYS OPERATE FROM ITS PRESENT PREMISES?
No. A small room located on the upper floor of a building on Lower South Street was our first location, we subsequently moved to an office located at the corner of Tanner and Market Streets. In both instances we were actually operating from premises rented by the Credit Union League. Then came 1989 when we acquired our own building on Lower All Saints Road, from which we still operate.
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE THINGS THAT MAKE MY CREDIT UNION DIFFERENT FROM OTHER FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS, SAY THE BANK?
- Unlike other financial institutions, each dollar each member must have share ownership of the organization.
- We are democratic, whereby the “one man – one vote” concept reigns.
- Co-operative principles govern the Credit Union.
- The service given by committee members who supervise proper operation of the Credit Union, is voluntary.
- The Credit Union, as a co-operative, means “people helping people”.
WHY WAS “SAVING TOGETHER FOR FINANCIAL SELF-SUFFICIENCY” SELECTED AS MY CREDIT UNION’S MOTTO?
This motto was selected because it truly embodies the main objective of the credit union. Savings form the backbone of any credit union. All the credit union’s activities, including the granting of loans, are geared toward the ultimate goal – the attainment of financial self-sufficiency, TRUE ECONOMIC INDEPENDENCE for you our members.
I AM ALWAYS BEING TOLD BY CREDIT UNION OFFICERS TO CONTINUE SAVING AND PURCHASING SHARES EVEN WHEN I AM REPAYING A LOAN. WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT?
Shares form the capital base of your credit union. Savings must constantly be built in order to create funds for on lending.
WHY AM I SOMETIMES ENCOURAGED TO BORROW RATHER THAN WITHDRAW FUNDS FROM MY ACCOUNT?
The more business you do with your credit union the more income is generated the greater the surplus, and the greater the returns to you. The more you withdraw from your savings the less funds you have available when a ‘rainy day’ comes along, and the less funds the credit union has to do business and assist you with; the less business the less income and the less returns to you.
CAN I ACCESS MY ACCOUNT OUTSIDE OF ANTIGUA?
Credit Union Members throughout the islands of the OECS and the Caribbean can access their funds via participating institutions including:
|Antigua & Barbuda||
|St. Kitts & Nevis||
|St. Vincent & the Grenadines||