January brought an important milestone for the Co-op Credit Union, which celebrated a quarter of a century since first being set up.
The credit union, which serves employees and members of the co-op sector as well as those who work in the charity, retail and housing sectors, marked the anniversary with an event at 1 Angel Square in Manchester on 24 January.
Originally set up to provide financial services for employees of the Co-op Group’s support centre in Manchester, the credit union has expanded its membership over the years to include anyone who is a member or works for a co-op organisation.
Since being established in 1998, the Co-op Credit Union has served over 28,000 members, with more than £50m having been lent to members at affordable rates and over £75m having been deposited in savings by members.
“We’re delighted to have reached this important milestone in our history,” said CEO Matt Bland. “It’s an opportunity to say thank you to all our members and the very many supporters, partners, volunteers, board members and staff who have helped support us over the last 25 years.
“We’re proud of our legacy and the impact we’ve had – and continue to have – on the lives of our members, often the most vulnerable and precarious in society, and we look forward to welcoming many more new members and partners on board in the years to come.”
To celebrate this important milestone the credit union has launched a new ‘Silver Saver’ account which will be available from 1 February. The new account will reward regular savers with an annual interest rate of 5% for regular savings up to £250 per month, subject to terms and conditions.
“Without our savers, we would not have the resources at our disposal to support those to whom we lend,” added Bland, “and therefore it is only right that we reward them with this extra return to say thank you for their support over so many years.”
“Financial wellbeing and access to affordable financial services are so important to people, especially in today’s current climate,” said the Co-op Group’s CEO, Shirine Khoury-Haq. “We’re delighted to celebrate 25 years of Co-op Credit Union.
“Our organisations share a very special difference in that we’re both co-operatives, we were founded on co-operation, and we share and use the same co-operative values to manage and drive our businesses. Because of this, we’re able to support not only our Co-op colleagues and members but also the rest of society. I know our 4,000 colleagues who are members of the union are so grateful for the access to affordable financial services, and we’re looking forward very much to continuing to work together in the future.”