Credit unions, politicians and Lloyds Banking Group gathered at the House of Commons this week, to celebrate the 23 credit unions sharing the £1 million 2018 round of funding for the Lloyds Banking Group Credit Union Development Fund.
Established in 2014, as part of Lloyds’ Helping Britain Prosper Plan and run in partnership with the Credit Union Foundation, the Fund has so far supported 103 credit unions across the UK and given them capacity to develop new strategies for sustained and effective growth.
In recognition of this success, the Group announced at the event that it will commit a further £1 million of funding in 2019 on top of the £5 million it has already delivered.
Speaking on behalf of The Credit Union Foundation, Secretary and ABCUL Chief Executive, Robert Kelly said: “The partnership between Lloyds Banking Group and The Credit Union Foundation has been truly transformational for the last 5 years and we are delighted to see the development fund being extended for a further year.
“The funding has allowed individual credit unions to boost their capital reserves, to embed new business development opportunities and to deliver new digital strategies. The recent growth in the sector has undoubtedly been positively influenced by the partnership and we really appreciate the on-going support from Lloyds Banking Group”.
Also speaking at this week’s event, Chair of the Credit Union Foundation, Lord Kennedy of Southwark said: "We thank Lloyds Banking Group for their generous support over a number of years, the £6 million you have invested into the sector is very, very welcome.
“Everyone at The Foundation and among the successful credit unions is hugely grateful to Lloyds Banking Group for their vision and commitment in making this transformational investment in our future.”
The event, was hosted by Chair of the All Parliamentary Group on Credit Unions, Bim Afolami MP, and addressed by Economic Secretary to the Treasury, John Glen MP, Minister for Pensions & Financial Inclusion, Guy Opperman MP and Managing Director of Hallifax Bank, Russell Galley.
John Glen MP said: “Tonight we are here to celebrate credit unions and the vital role they play in our financial sector.” The minister added that credit unions give options to people who would otherwise take out exploitative credit and that central Government is always looking at ways to expand the strength and diversity of the credit union movement. He spoke warmly of the engagement he has had from the sector in his time as Minister and looked forward to the outcome of ABCUL’s Town Hall consultation as a blueprint for the future.
John Glen continued: “I thank Lloyds Banking Group for providing the 17 seed grants and six large grants to credit unions in this round of funding and also I am grateful for the positive way in which credit unions have engaged with Government over the last five years.”
Russell Galley spoke about the importance of Lloyds Banking Group’s partnership with credit unions to achieve their ultimate goal of ‘Helping Britain Prosper’. Russell said: “Credit unions play a key part in our Helping Britain Prosper strategy which is designed to tackle both social and economic issues. Our goal is to enable as many people as possible to access services to promote financial inclusion for all. The group is excited with the launch of our panel working to create a toolkit of resources specifically for mentoring credit unions with.”