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Why People Give to Credit Union Development
Why people give to credit union development.

By: Denise Snow


My husband just recently retired from the navy and I have worked in financial institutions for 16 plus years. We have four children and have made many moves with the military. There have been many times when money was very tight. Luckily with us both working, we have managed to always have a roof over our heads, warm clothing, and food. We have been very blessed to have the opportunity for me to find work at each of our new locations. Being able to help provide for my family, to help improve our quality of life, has positively impacted my whole life, how I see myself, my family, my friends, and people I meet, and also how they see me. I have seen for myself and fully believe that we ALL can make a difference in this crazy world of ours, each and every one of us to both our own lives and those around us.

This is why we contribute to credit union development:

When I first heard Carol Schillios speak of the Credit Union Movement and the projects she is working on in Africa, I was astounded by the magnitude of possibilities for these people. I have been hooked from that moment on. Here were women, with little to no money themselves, and even less money available to them, willing to work, and work hard, to support themselves and their family. Once they themselves had established their business and jobs and repaid their loan, they in turn would stand behind the next person asking for a loan, they would help "guarantee the loan". What a wonderful system! One major flaw was there was no money in the Credit Union to loan out! Carol was suggesting that anyone who was interested could open an account with a minimum of a dollar! ONE DOLLAR! Shoot, I spend more than that on an impulse buy! AND she explained how far that dollar would go and that 100% would go to the Credit Union! They also teach health care, and education, and they do it in such a way as not to offend or overrun the "students" culture and beliefs.

So, I went home and very excitedly explained everything to my husband and told him how I would like to have a few dollars go every payday towards these great projects Carol is promoting. My husband said, "go for it!" These are women who are willing to work to support themselves and their families, they are not asking for handouts!

We currently donate $5.00 each payday, and we do not notice the shortage in our lives. In all honestly what is five dollars to us? One hamburger, maybe a coffee or two, a movie rental. All of which are very superfluous items. According to Carol, five dollars can feed a family for a week!! We feel it is more than worth the contribution! And this year we plan to raise it to $10, after all the price of movie rentals has gone up!

Do we know these people, no. Will we ever meet them, probably not. But somewhere in the past, someone took a chance on a member or two of our family, lent them a little money to get on their feet, and look at us now!

What goes around, comes around, we are just continuing to move the circle.

To learn more about contributing to credit union development visit The Schillios Development Foundation at www.schillios.com or make a contribution to rebuild credit unions affected by the Tsunami by donation to the World Council of Credit Union through the Washington Credit Union Foundation.
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