Frequently Asked Questions
What happened to the village Financial Credit Union?
Because the word Village is being used and trademarked by a bank in Minnesota, ABEP was
advised to utilize a different name. ABEP engaged the community in the name selection process
and Arise Community Credit Union was selected by a landslide. Originally Arise (formerly Village) was on a fast-track to open in 2019, two years after the idea was conceived in 2017. This was an ambitious timeline which the original organizers had to abandon. A charter is a license to operate. Typically securing a charter to start a Credit Union can take two- three years, depending upon the resources, knowledge, and expertise available. After a period of reorganization ABEP re-ignited its efforts and is closer than ever to completing the application process.
What steps have been put into place to ensure your efforts succeed now?
New committed leadership in place, including a full Board and an Executive Director
Realistic strategic plan adopted mentoring available from the black banking movement, local Credit Unions, the cooperative development organization
Development of a variety of nonprofit organization policies and procedures to establish financial controls and to facilitate overall monitoring
Partnerships with local business and financial entities being established
Aggressive community membership campaign being activated
Local government (city) relationships being solidified
How will the Credit Union benefit the community in comparison to a bank?
Credit Unions are not-for-profit and provide needs-based consumer services like low interest
rates. Banks are for-profit organizations which seek to earn profits that are returned to the
shareholders. Credit Unions are cooperatives in which resources are put back into member
benefits, programs, and entities within the community through increased/improved services
and better rates. They have a broad mission to be community-oriented and to serve people, not
profit. A Credit Union like Arise Community Credit Union will be uniquely positioned to
understand the challenges its community members face.
How can the public trust that deposits will be safe?
The Minnesota Department of Commerce requires that all state chartered Credit Unions are
insured by the National Credit Union Association. As a result, deposits of up to $250,000 are
Why is it taking so long to get the Credit Union up and running?
While the typical application process can take two to three years, some can take longer. The
reason varies from application to application. Arise’s process was aborted at the end of its
second year, the fall 2019, because of suspicion of mismanagement. The following year, 2020,
the founding organization – ABEP – reorganized its leadership, developed a strategic plan for its
operations, and implemented controls in order to prepare to re-launch the application process
and to get ready for Phase One of its opening. With the reorganization, ABEP was informed that it could not use any of the earlier application information captured through the original effort and literally had to start over.
What is the anticipated date that the Credit Union will become operational?
The exact date is unknown and heavily depends on when the application is submitted to the
state and federal regulators and how long it takes them to review and approve it.
However, after it is approved, ABEP is planning on a progressive opening/launch of the Credit
Union, starting with basic consumer services and continually adding services as resources and
capacity increase. Provision of services are, however, contingent upon the following factors:
Completion of build-out of promised space Hiring and training of initial personnel for different departments, including a Credit Union CEO Implementation of community-specific financial programs and services Acquisition of specified number of members and specified amount of depositors’
Will Northside residents play a role in what products and services are offered?
Absolutely! However, services and lending will primarily be directed toward individual
consumers and secondarily to local businesses in order to build and secure community wealth.
Will the Credit Union be owned and operated by African Americans?
Yes. Since members own the credit union, to the extent people in the African American
community support and become members they will own and have a voice in the credit union.
The credit union leadership will be a reflection of the core community it serves.
What are the main differences between a Credit Union and a traditional bank?
The main difference is that a Credit Union is member-owned and not-for-profit.
Will Arise Community Credit Union have a State charter?
Yes, we are applying for a State charter through the Minnesota Department of Commerce.
Will deposits be federally insured?
Yes, there will be federal deposit insurance through the National Credit Union Administration.
When will the Credit Union be open for business?
Our current target is a grand opening in Q4 2022.
Will you have branch locations or just digital services?
We will have both. Plus, our members will have access to shared branch services at other credit unions, when that is more convenient.
What are the next steps?
First, we must receive the State charter and initial capitalization.
Then, we will begin to launch the back office technology requirements for the Credit Union.
How can I get involved right now?
Please complete the community survey and attend community outreach meetings.
Also, please contact city and state officials or ABEP to provide a letter of support.