International Credit Union Day
International Credit Union (ICU) Day has been celebrated on the third Thursday of October since 1948. The day is recognized to reflect upon the credit union movement's history and to promote its achievements. It is a day to honor those who have dedicated their lives to the movement, recognize the hard work of those working in the credit union industry and show members our appreciation.
The ultimate goal is to raise awareness about the great work that credit unions are doing around the world and give members the opportunity to get more involved. Credit unions and associations throughout the world celebrate the day with fundraisers, open houses, contests, picnics and parades. World Council of Credit Unions has provided its members with ICU Day materials for over 30 years.
What is a Credit Union?
Credit unions, called by various names around the world, are member-owned, notfor-profit financial cooperatives that provide savings, credit and other financial services to their members. Credit union membership is based on a common bond, a linkage shared by savers and borrowers who belong to a specific community, organization, religion or place of employment. Credit unions pool their members' savings deposits and shares to finance their own loan portfolios rather than rely on outside capital. Members benefit from higher returns on savings, lower rates on loans and fewer fees on average.
Credit unions worldwide offer members from all walks of life much more than financial services. They provide members the chance to own their own financial institution and help them create opportunities such as starting small businesses, growing farms, building family homes and educating their children.
Regardless of account size in the credit union, each member may run for the volunteer board of directors and cast a vote in elections. In some countries, members encounter their first taste of democratic decision making through their credit unions.