Credit Unions

Appreciating the unsung heroes of America's communities

Aaron Long
October 4, 2023

Celebrating International Credit Union Day with Zest AI 

You caught us — we’re early to the credit union party. But if you should know anything about Zest AI, it’s that we like to be the ones to get the party started. So, let’s make a big to-do about International Credit Union Day all month long!

The importance of credit unions to their communities

When we look at the basics of banking to long-term investment options, credit unions play an essential role in Americans’ ability to build wealth. We’ve watched as they’ve empowered individuals and communities to take control of their financial futures, and provided members with affordable options for financial services, including access to loans, competitive interest rates, and improved banking options. They are particularly essential for low-to middle-income households and also contribute to community development. 

While credit unions are key to helping preserve financial stability in times of difficulty, they’re also there to help when life is more la vie en rose. Day in and day out, credit unions are providing vital financial services, promoting financial literacy, and offering personalized attention that just doesn’t happen at big banks. 

Now, you may be asking, “Why are you saying credit unions are the unsung heroes?”  Well — oftentimes, the efforts of credit unions go largely unseen by the public. Yet, their impact makes a big difference in individual, family, and community development. Without the assistance of credit unions, many individuals would become trapped in a cycle of debt due to high-interest rates, and communities would lack access to essential banking services. Through their efforts, credit unions have enabled individuals to gain access to the economic opportunities necessary to build and grow wealth for their families.

A hypothetical world without credit unions 

I hate to imagine it, so let’s keep this section short.

Higher interest rates on loans, meaning higher costs all around. Access to credit would shrink. Financial opportunities for low income families would dwindle. Financial literacy would further decline. Communities would lose volunteer groups and helping hands. Community investment and development would slow. 

Told you — it’s a bad day for financial services without credit unions in the industry!

So let’s support and celebrate credit unions 

As we celebrate International Credit Union Day, we have an opportunity to thank and honor the unseen heroes of America's communities — our credit unions. These leaders in lending have had a profound effect on America's financial landscape, and even more so on the empowerment and development of our local communities. The wealth of benefits that credit unions bring to our towns, cities, and neighborhoods might not be readily apparent, but there is no imagining a modern America without them.

The only thing certain about the future is that it’s unpredictable. But credit unions must be part of that future. Zest AI is committed to seeing this happen, and we look forward to celebrating many more International Credit Union Days ahead!

Check out the voices of credit unions that have inspired us! Visit our International Credit Union Day — All Month Long page to learn more. 

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