Nusenda Credit Union was recognized last week at the 2015 Global Banking Innovation Awards Impact hosted by BAI Infosys Finacle as the Most Innovative Community-Based Banking Organization and also won the Innovation in Societal and Community Impact Award, an honor designated for organizations that have designed or enhanced products and services or have provided channel accessibility to meet the needs of community members who have experienced barriers or access issues.
Two of Nusenda’s programs, Co-Op Capital and Powering Success, were instrumental in winning these awards. Nusenda Credit Union has worked diligently over the last several years to create innovative pilot projects that empower people and it is extremely exciting to have this work being recognized at an international level. Living Cities has also recognized the Co-Op Capital program and it is one of the key strategies in Albuquerque’s Integration Initiative work. The Casey Foundation has worked with us to expand our Powering Success program to more students, and Nusenda is working with the other Living Cities Integration Initiative sites, as well as the Federal Reserve partnership, to expand this program in workforce and education.
These programs are an excellent example of cross-sector collaboration, much like the Mayor’s Prize Program. Innovative, solution-driven programs like these are being recognized as valuable tools to deal with challenges faced by communities across the country. Thank you for your ongoing support in developing programs that make a difference in our community and others.
BAI used this language to describe our innovative programs.
MOST INNOVATIVE COMMUNITY BASED BANKING ORGANIZATION CATEGORY
“Nusenda Credit Union developed Co-op Capital, a collaborative financial product, to widen access to capital that is usually out of reach for low-income entrepreneurs. While character-based, community circle micro-lending is not new to the field of financing, especially internationally, the foresight to offer these loans through member organizations versus the banking institution is largely untried in the United States. The product flips the traditional model of a borrower applying for a loan through a financial institution. Instead a member organization, such as a co-op, union or association, sponsors a loan on behalf of one of their member affiliates.
Nusenda is firmly established as a progressive, nationally-recognized co-operative organization energized by innovation, committed to its community, and determined to achieve greater impact. The largest credit union in the state by membership, it operates and supports various innovative programs in the community, including partnering in a micro-aid initiative that provides micro loans to underserved and high risk students in the same way that startup companies are financed.”
Please check out the following link to an article written by Oscar Perry Abello with Next City that features our work: https://nextcity.org/daily/entry/social-good-investing-small-business-albuquerque-coop