Credit unions brace for fallout
by George Alleyne
The Barbados Public Workers Cooperative Credit Union is steeling itself for the financial fallout from current public sector layoffs.
And, credit union President Glendon Belle said the organisation has put in place programmes to assist and guide members with financial problems.
Belle delivered a statement of assurance and optimism this morning at the Hawthorn Memorial Methodist Church where Barbados’ largest credit union kicked off celebration of its 44th anniversary.
“This year we have been bracing ourselves for the impact of the retrenchment of some of our members. [It] will impact on us as well, but the impact will be [more] on members,” Belle said to the congregation.
Among those in attendance were Sir Harcourt Lewis and Ralph Boyce, both of whom Belle hailed as, “the foundation builders of this
organisation that brought it to be at the level where it is at this time”.
He said the upper Broad Street member-owned financial house was being proactive in the face of financial threats to members.
“Bracing is not waiting to see what will happen, bracing is preparation, focus and optimism. We have instituted support systems and processes to work with our members to sustain their credit ratings and provide greater general assistance in any dire situations that may have arisen where ever possible, in terms of enhancing their financing situation,” he said.
Belle, who heads the organisation that as of 2013 boasted over 3,000 members, said, “Over time we will continue to amend our products and services and our outreach…We will exercise prudence but we will not let the challenges of the day negatively impact … or delay our quality of service”.
He added, “To be optimistic in such a challenging period can only be attributed to our organisation’s deep-rooted faith in God.
“I encourage you to draw on your spiritual faith while you retain a spirit of optimism. Continue to focus on investment savings, and your personal contribution to sustaining our island’s economy and all local credit unions.”
The Public Workers Credit Union’s anniversary is Tuesday, but the organisation has a month-long programme of celebrations.