The Pioneer Mutual Team
Pioneer Mutual Credit Union has today been awarded a £50,000 grant by Lloyds Banking Group to enable it to increase its reserves to expand the common bond across the West of Scotland.
Pioneer Mutual Credit Union offers safe savings accounts and affordable loans to anyone living or working in a G, PA or ML. The money will allow the credit union to provide a better service to their members and increase their outreach activities.
Stephen Walsh from Pioneer Mutual Credit Union said: “The timing of this grant couldn’t be better after the Christmas period; the funding will allow us to grow our membership without effecting the products or great service our members have come to expect. If you wish further information on the benefits of becoming a Pioneer Mutual Credit Union member, please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0141 881 1353.”
Pioneer Mutual Credit Union is amongst 21 credit unions across the country that are benefitting from £1m in grants from Lloyds Banking Group, delivered through the Credit Union Foundation. Lloyds has committed to provide £1m each year for four years and today’s award is the third wave of funding to be released. The investment should enable the credit union sector to lend an additional £20million to their customers1.
Philip Grant, Chair of the Scottish Executive Committee for Lloyds Banking Group, said, “Credit unions play a vital role in local communities and these grants will help them to provide improved access to financial services in Scotland. I am delighted with the announcement of these grants which underlines our commitment to help Britain prosper”.
Liz Barclay, Chair of the Credit Union Foundation and Development Fund Grants Committee said: “The Credit Union Foundation is proud to work in partnership with Lloyds Banking Group. Their £4 million investment over four years is innovative and pioneering and now that we’re into the third year of the scheme we’re seeing a big impact on sustainable credit union growth. Credit unions provide an ethical and affordable financial service to some of the hardest to reach and most financially excluded communities in the UK. We’re seeing good quality applications for these capital awards from credit unions committed to expanding and improving the services they offer those communities.”
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Notes to editors:
The funding programme is designed to strengthen the financial position of credit unions and give them the capacity to develop new strategies for sustained and effective growth. The funding programme offers two grant options: large awards between £50,000 and £100,000 and seed funding awards between £10,000 and £20,000.
Eleven credit unions will receive large awards, intended to provide a contribution to a their reserves and help remove barriers to growth and innovation, with another ten receiving seed funding awards to help make the changes they need to apply for a large award in a subsequent year or to pay for the costs of merger.
As well as Lloyds Banking Group’s £4million investment over four years, it also signposts customers it is unable to help, where appropriate, to their local credit union and provides volunteering support.
Helping Britain Prosper:
In March 2014, the Group published its Helping Britain Prosper Plan, setting out seven separate and significant public commitments to do even more to help address some of the big issues facing its customers and Britain today. As part of the Plan, the Group has committed to take a lead in financial inclusion to enable all individuals to access and benefit from, the products and services they need to make the most of their money.
To find out more about Lloyds Banking Group’s commitment to Help Britain Prosper, please visit http://www.lloydsbankinggroup.com/our-group/responsible-business/our-community-programmes/supporting-credit-unions/
1 Credit unions can lend multiple of their reserves. By increasing their reserves we enable them to do more lending. ABCUL confirmed that based on the leverage that our 2014 programme created, this could enable credit unions to lend an additional c.£20m over the full term of our programme.
Regional breakdown of Credit Unions receiving grants:
|2016 Seed Award Winners||Amount awarded|
|CROYDON, MERTON AND SUTTON CREDITUNION LTD||£16,939|
|HARLOWSAVE CREDIT UNION LIMITED||£20,000|
|JUST CU LTD||£20,000|
|LIVINGSTON CREDIT UNION||£20,000|
|NEWTOWNARDS CREDIT UNION||£13,600|
|SEFTON CREDIT UNION LIMITED||£20,000|
|SLEMISH N THA BRAID CREDIT UNION||£19,000|
|STIRLING CREDIT UNION LIMITED||£11,400|
|WYVERN CREDIT UNION||£20,000|
|2016 Large Award Winners||Amount awarded|
|1st CLASS CREDIT UNION LTD||£60,000|
|BLACKPOOL FYLDE & WYRE CREDITUNION LTD||£100,000|
|PIONEER MUTUAL CREDIT UNION LTD||£50,000|
|GREENWICH CREDIT UNION LIMITED||£100,000|
|HILLINGDON CREDIT UNION LTD||£50,000|
|HULL & EAST YORKSHIRE CREDIT UNION LIMITED||£100,000|
|NE FIRST CREDIT UNION LTD||£50,000|
|NEATH PORT TALBOT CREDIT UNION LTD||£60,000|
|NORTH LONDON CREDIT UNION LIMITED||£50,000|
|RIVERSIDE CREDIT UNION LIMITED||£90,000|
|STEVENAGE CREDIT UNION LIMITED||£50,000|
About the Credit Union Foundation
The Credit Union Foundation is an independent charity dedicated to creating wealth and financial independence through credit unions by providing investment, education and community support.
The Foundation provides grants and other support to allow all credit unions to extend their services to people in need. The Foundation also aims to build the skills of credit unions to better serve their communities and to educate the public about credit unions and how they help to relieve poverty and need.
About Credit Unions
Credit unions, although not widely publicised, are a fast-growing alternative to banks, building societies and doorstep/payday lenders. They offer a range of savings accounts, current accounts and loans to their members.
A credit union is a form of co-operative. It’s “run by the members, for the members”. They are not-for-profit, and are formed by people who have something in common. This ‘common bond’ could be the same:
- Industry (the police have a credit union for instance)
- Trade union, club or church
Credit unions are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), meaning that they are also covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). The FSCS will protect the first £85,000 that each individual has with a credit union.