The NC Credit Union League honored Charlotte Metro Federal Credit Union (CMCU) for its financial education efforts in 2012. The credit union won honorable mention for the statewide Alphonse Desjardins Adult Financial Education Award. The credit union received the award on June 10th during the NCCUL Annual Meeting in Pinehurst.
The Desjardins Adult Financial Education Award recognizes leadership within the credit union movement on behalf of adult financial literacy. It considers all activities supporting the financial instruction of adult members and non-members; raising awareness of financial education programs offered; and collaboration with other organizations to provide financial education. Credit unions compete by asset category, in order to ensure fairness. CMCU received the honorable mention in the $150 - $500 million asset category.
CMCU created and implemented a series of compassionate financial counseling sessions with members who were struggling with debt management and other types of financial problems. These sessions allowed the members to develop trusting relationships, while working with the counselor to come up with a solution that fit their personal situation. Members raised their credit scores an average of 40 points, but the biggest benefit has been that members have gained control of their financial lives.
The credit union also initiated two programs at UNC-Charlotte to educate young people about finances and budgeting. These efforts help reinforce the people helping people philosophy of credit unions.