On October 16, 2014, credit unions around the world will celebrate International Credit Union (ICU) Day®. That’s 200+ million people … from 56,000 credit unions … in 101 countries joining together to celebrate their cooperative spirit.
Globally, this cooperative spirit has led to life-changing opportunities in the form of small business start-ups, home ownership, and education. In some countries, members encounter their first taste of democratic decision-making through their member-owned credit unions.
This year, credit unions have been present during the most tumultuous moments around the world. Throughout the crisis in Ukraine, credit union volunteers were among the protesters in Kiev and are now attempting to maintain financial stability for their members. With the help of the World Council of Credit Unions, which is supported by credit unions in the U.S., Ukrainian credit unions are working on ways to ensure loans can be made to those who need it, and upholding the confidence of their members.
On the other side of the globe, credit unions in the Philippines are dealing with the devastation left after the recent typhoon. With the help of credit union organizations around the world, they are now rebuilding and renovating affected branches to better fit members’ needs. After such destruction, these Filipino credit unions are helping people get back on their feet. And credit unions worldwide are providing the basis for development while serving local communities, with an unwavering belief in the “people helping people” philosophy upon which we were built.
Locally, as a member of Harvard University Employees Credit Union, you and your financial stability are our top priorities. Globally, you’re part of a much bigger movement—the credit union movement—working towards global good each and every day. That’s definitely something to celebrate!