What Exactly is a Credit Union?
A credit union is a financial institution that is owned by its members. Credit Unions were born of hard times. They were designed for people of average means to obtain loans and other financial services. This was a self help concept that enabled people to pool their resources to loan money to their fellow members.
The Farmers Credit Union was chartered in 1953. Since that time we have been located in three locations in Hays, Kansas. We have also increased our services from a starting point of savings accounts and loans to a full service institution. Of course credit unions are different from banks. A credit union is managed and supervised by a group of non paid volunteers comprised of a Board of Directors, Credit Committee, and a Supervisory Committee. These folks are elected at an annual meeting. The Board of Directors then hire paid employees who are employed to run the day to day business of the credit union.
Of course, we believe that a business that is in operation to serve its members in addition to making a profit is superior to a commercial bank, which is driven by profit alone. In order to do business at a credit union you must be a member of the organization. This requires merely opening a savings account - (called a “share account”.) Once this occurs, a person is officially a member of the credit union. This person is now eligible to use all the services that the credit union offers. If you move from this location you can still retain your membership “Once a member, always a member” is the watchword.