Supporting the Credit Union
Croydon Council is backing the re-launch of Croydon Plus with a £100,000 loan to the Credit Union.
The credit union aims to keep hundreds of residents out of the grasp of payday loan companies, which trade on desperate people borrowing money at sky-high interest rates. Croydon Plus promises low interest rates on loans and a range of other banking services. The credit union is based on local people helping each other. One person’s savings is loaned to another member. The interest the borrower pays goes back into the credit union for the benefit of the members. There are no external shareholders.
This relaunch sees the introduction of on-line banking and a new product, the Jam Jar Account. When a member opens their Jam Jar Account, they will agree to have any benefits they may be receiving paid straight into the account, which will then manage the funds, settle household bills, pay off debts and put aside a small percentage as savings.
Mark Watson, the council cabinet member for communities, said: “We want to help as many members of the borough’s communities as we can, particularly at a time that’s seeing the introduction of universal credit, which will impact on many of our residents. We see Croydon Plus as a positive way of encouraging people to save a little – whether it’s for a rainy day or a special occasion – and also to offer them financial support when they need it, at a fair interest rate and without the stresses and intimidation that can come with other, less reputable, loan providers."