The Self-Help Credit Union (SHCU) is a federally insured, state-chartered credit union headquartered in Durham, North Carolina. SHCU operates out of eleven offices throughout North Carolina, including three full-service credit union branches, as well as locations in Washington, D.C. and Oakland, California. SHCU uses interest-bearing deposits (such as CDs and IRAs) to fund home and commercial loans to underserved populations. Together with Self-Help Ventures Fund, the Credit Union's programs have assisted people of color, women, rural residents, and low-wealth families to buy homes, to build businesses, and to strengthen communities.
A deposit account in SHCU offers the security of a federally insured investment, and a market rate of return. Deposit accounts make a difference by providing home and small business loans to families and businesses that otherwise wouldn't have access to credit.
Accounts are open to individuals, nonprofits, religious organizations and foundations that are specifically interested in the security of a federally insured investment, a good rate of return, and most importantly, an investment with a positive community impact.
SHCU account services include:
Savings Account: Provides members a safe place to invest their money with no minimum balance. Money Market Account: Offers members nationwide ATM access (no charge), three checks per month, automatic investment, and electronic bill paying. ($500 minimum balance) Certificate of Deposit: Self-Help Credit Union offers Childcare and Environmental CDs, which specifically assist in their lending to childcare centers, community resources, and environmentally friendly businesses. ($1,000 minimum; rates and terms vary) Individual Retirement Accounts: Offers members an opportunity to plan for their retirement or establish an education fund. ($25 minimum investment) Economic Development Deposits (EDD): Offers members certificates at lower interest rates (0-2%). Specialized EDDs are offered targeted to disaster victims and special needs projects.
Self-Help targets people of color, women, rural residents, and low-wealth borrowers. Since its founding in 1984, 43% of Self-Help Credit Union's borrowers have been women; 42% have been people of color, 51% have lived in rural areas, and 31% came from low-income households. These borrowers have achieved their goals of owning homes and capitalizing business ventures. Their strength has allowed Self-Help to grow into a strong and diverse institution, able to take risks in lending and develop innovative products to better serve their needs.
Since 1984, Self-Help Credit Union's mission has been to help build assets and create economic opportunities for families and their communities. To date, the credit union has made 4,704 loans totaling over $350 million. These loans have helped 3,642 borrowers to buy homes, 906 borrowers to capitalize small businesses, and provided capital for 160 child care facilities, health care centers, and other non-profit facilities. Collectively, this financing has created and/or maintained nearly 5,300 jobs, over 5,000 child care slots, and over 3,600 school spaces.
Recently Self-Help Credit Union successfully reached out to the local Latino community. Most recently, a Self-Help home loan officer worked with the Vargas family so that they could purchase a home of their own. All five family members are Mexican and Spanish is their primary language. With the help of this bilingual loan officer, the Vargas family has successfully closed a loan and they are enjoying their first home through the USDA's home mortgage assistance program. Full Story