Together We Advance
Juntos Avanzamos (which means “together we advance” in Spanish), was developed by Cornerstone Credit Union League representing Arkansas, Oklahoma and Texas. Credit unions are recognized for their ability to effectively serve their Hispanic members and communities. To be considered for the designation, Credit Unions are required to provide information about the products and services it offers to specifically address the needs of the Hispanic market, as well as its strategies for serving the demographic.
"Consistent with the credit union mission of service to members and their communities, Juntos Avanzamos is an outreach program to assist Hispanic members understand our financial system and provide them with pertinent and affordable financial services," explains Cornerstone's President/CEO Richard L. Ensweiler. "This typically underserved segment of the population needs and appreciates the personal service credit unions provide. Juntos Avanzamos is a way of qualifying credit unions to ensure they are truly Hispanic friendly, and then tell the community the credit union is ready and willing to serve this demographic. Juntos Avanzamos has proven to be an excellent outreach program in Texas and Oklahoma, and is now ready to be expanded elsewhere," continues Ensweiler.
Originally launched in 2005 as an immigrant outreach program, the Juntos Avanzamos program was designed to help credit unions attract and serve the growing Hispanic market in Texas explains Bob Peterson, president and CEO of One Source Credit Union in El Paso, Texas, and chairman of Cornerstone's International Relations Subcommittee. "The program has expanded into Oklahoma as a result of the formation of the Cornerstone Credit Union League, and now nationally as a result of ongoing work with Coopera, the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions, and other state or regional leagues," says Peterson.
The Cornerstone League, the Federation, and Coopera–Iowa-based consultants to the industry on the Hispanic market–have been worked together to bring this program to a national credit union audience. The program will initially focus on the Southwest, where it will be promoted and supported by the California/Nevada Credit Union Leagues, the Credit Union Association of New Mexico, and Mountain West Credit Union Association.
The Juntos Avanzamos designation for Rio Grande Credit Union is a validation of our ongoing efforts to help our local community thrive, while continuing the credit union ethos "people helping people."
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