All credit unions share a common goal, which is to offer access to affordable financial services for all their members and provide the financially disadvantaged the tools and opportunities to be financially self-sufficient. Credit unions are unique because they are non-profit, democratically controlled and member-owned cooperatives. Members of credit unions pool their assets to provide low-cost loans and other financial services to each other. This cooperative spirit of the movement is embodied by 250, 000 members in PNG who are included in the 215 (+) million worldwide members, working together to achieve economic advancement.
At our credit unions or our Societies, every staff member and customer is both a member and an owner, i.e. They are both Equal.
The 2016 Credit Union Day theme – The authentic Difference – celebrates the economic democracy and equal ownership rights of each credit union member, regardless of how much money that member may have in savings. Because of their member/owners, some 57, 000 Credit Unions (21 in PNG) are able to play a vital role in the development and financial stability in the communities they serve by providing fair loans, sound fiscal advice, and high-quality consumer services to their members for more than 150 years.
Credit unions have operated according to the same core principles since the 1850s, when a group of weary German workers, tired of being exploited by loan sharks, formed the world’s first credit union by banding together to provide affordable credit to each other.
These principles are based on the 9 cooperative principles, shared by all cooperatives. They are:
1. Democratic Control
One member = One vote. Whether you have K 5 or K 5 million, your voice is equal.
2. Open and Voluntary Membership
Members are connected by a bond of association, fostering a sense of community.
Credit unions are open to all without regard for race, orientation, nationality, sex, religion, gender, or politics.
4. Service to Members
Credit unions are ranked No. 1 in service in numerous surveys, because they exist to serve members, not profit.
5. Distribution to Members
Credit unions return all profits to their members through dividends, lower fees, better savings rates, and improved services.
6. Building Financial Stability
Credit unions are historically stable organizations. They’re owned by the people they serve, so they don’t take unnecessary risks.
7. Cooperation among Cooperatives
Credit unions and cooperatives share the same principles. Together, they amplify each other’s good works.
8. Social Responsibility
Credit unions strive for social justice by committing to strengthening their communities and helping people of modest means.
9. Ongoing Education
Credit unions prioritize financial education for their members, employees, and communities as part of their pursuit of social justice.
Putting people before profit, prioritizing social responsibility, and offering financial education improves lives. These values are why your Savings & Loan Society is a key component of helping people in developing countries like PNG gain access to microloans, or a working-class couple in NCD receive an affordable school fee loan for their first child when he/she starts a schooling career.
So when a person joins a savings and loan society, he or she belongs to a movement that’s helping his or her neighbour—and people around PNG and the world—grow and thrive and follow their dreams.
IF YOU ARE NOT A MEMBER NOW, YOU CAN IMMEDIATELY JOIN ONE OF OUR MEMBER SOCIETIES SO YOU TOO CAN SHARE OUR CO-OPERATIVE SPIRIT AND VALUES.