What is a credit union? Glad you asked.
Credit unions are not-for-profit financial organizations. Like banks, they accept deposits, make loans, and provide a wide array of other financial services. But as member-owned and cooperative institutions, credit unions are focused on improving the lives of their members and strengthening the communities they serve.
Credit unions are owned and controlled by the people who use their services. And your vote counts. Members elect a volunteer Board of Directors to manage a credit union.
Credit unions operate to promote the well-being of their members. Profits made by credit unions are returned back to members in the form of reduced fees, higher savings rates and lower loan rates.
Members of a credit union share a common bond, also know as the credit union's "field of membership." Great Erie membership is available to anyone that lives, works, worships, or attends school in Erie County, NY.
Members often have shared interests and appreciate participating in an institution designed to help other members. Credit unions often provide financial education and outreach to their members and the communities they serve.
The cooperative structure of credit unions creates a cycle of mutual assistance towards the common goal of the financial well-being of members. One member's savings becomes another member's loan.
Great Erie supports the seven cooperative principles for credit unions:
- Voluntary membership
- Democratic member control
- Members' economic participation
- Autonomy and independence
- Education, training and information
- Cooperation among cooperatives
- Concern for community
These seven principles are founded in the philosophy of cooperation and its central values of equality, equity and mutual self-help. They express, around the world, the principles of human development and the brotherhood of man through people working together to achieve a better life for themselves and their community.
Great Erie Federal Credit Union is a full-service credit union serving the Buffalo and Erie County area including Hamburg, West Seneca, Orchard Park and East Aurora, New York.