Self-Help Shares

From Gardening to Impersonating Sharks: We Love our Summer Interns

By Mary M.
  | Aug 08, 2016

Excuse us if we’re a little weepy at Self-Help this week. We’re missing our summer interns, most of whom had their final day with us last Friday.  These accomplished students and recent graduates come to us with loads of talent and a strong sense of mission, and we get pretty attached.

Self-Help interns 2016

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Making a Difference Together: A Church, a City and a Community Developer

By Jordan Kinser, Faith-Based Initiatives Intern at Self-Help
  | Aug 02, 2016

Ribbon-cutting event for Elizabeth Heights

Self-Help staff, community partners and church leaders come together for a groundbreaking ceremony in Charlotte.

For almost a century, Myers Park Presbyterian Church (“Myers Park”) has been engaged in the project of making life better for people in the Charlotte community. In the early 2000s, Myers Park leaders held a series of robust community dialogues to figure out how they could do more good in their community. Again and again, these conversations pointed to a great need in the nearby Grier Heights neighborhood.

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Let's Stop 400% Payday Loans: Submit a Comment Today

By Claire Fishman
  | Jul 25, 2016

Your opinion counts. Tell the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to stop debt-trap payday loans once and for all!  

Stop Debt Trap graphic

Image from

Would you want a credit card with an APR of nearly 400%? As part of my internship with the Center for Responsible Lending, this summer I’ve been canvassing on street corners, talking to people about predatory lending. Most people I’ve met are shocked to learn that 391% is the average annual interest rate on payday loans—small loans marketed as quick fixes for cash-strapped families.

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Our 2016 Scholarships Winners

By Maya Dantzler
  | Jul 12, 2016

Eighteen Self-Help Credit Union branches awarded $500 education scholarships for students active in their community. This is the second year Self-Help has sponsored scholarships statewide.

Students were judged on their proven commitment to community service through leadership or volunteer activities. To be eligible students have to be enrolled or planning to enroll in a post-secondary college or vocational school and write an essay on the importance of being active in the community.


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Homeownership: Still the Way to Build Wealth

By Mary M.
  | Jun 21, 2016

June is National Homeownership Month, an occasion well worth celebrating. That’s because families who own homes are able to acquire wealth, not just income. According to a 2014 Federal Reserve study, homeowners, on average, have a median net worth that is 36 times greater than renters--$195,400 for owners versus $5,400 for families that rent.  Owning a home remains America’s best and most reliable path to economic opportunity. 
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Get a Money Makeover with Free Financial Advice

By Mary M.
  | Jun 02, 2016

OnTrack WNC financial counseling sessions

As we enter bathing suit weather in North Carolina, many people think about shedding pounds, but it’s also a great time to shed debt and plan for rainy days. Nearly everyone would like to be in better shape financially—but how?  At Self-Help, we offer several ways members can get help with finances.

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Match-Making in Durham: Self-Help and MDC Host Event to Attract Marrow Donors

By Mary M.
  | May 20, 2016

Brittany Bennett, participant in the event

Every day thousands of people get diagnosed with a life-threatening blood disease such as leukemia or lymphoma. Many cases can be cured with a marrow or stem cell transplant, but it’s crucial to find a donor with a matching tissue type. Potential donors simply need to register and get a tissue test with a fast, easy swab of their cheek. 

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FOCUS: Fair Pay for Restaurant Workers

By Mary M.
  | May 05, 2016

The restaurant industry is booming nationwide and in North Carolina, providing lots of employment opportunities: about 350,000 workers prepare and serve food in NC restaurants. Unfortunately, too many of these jobs don’t pay a living wage. In NC, one in three restaurant workers lives under the poverty line. About 80% get no earned sick pay, and therefore must choose between working while sick or falling short on their bills.*  Earnings from tips are hit-or-miss, and tipping results in inequities for both restaurant customers and servers.

These were among the issues that prompted a recent public forum dubbed “Forked Durham.”

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Where We've Been, Where We're Going

By Martin E.
  | Apr 26, 2016

Dear Members and Friends,


We’re only in the second quarter, but already this has been an eventful year. In January, Self-Help Federal Credit Union merged with Community Trust Federal Credit Union, a small institution with a large local impact serving farmworkers in rural Apopka, Florida. In February, we launched a new mortgage program (The Affordable Loan Solution™) with Bank of America and Freddie Mac, and we are expanding that program with other partners to be announced soon.  Most recently, Self-Help Credit Union merged with Greater Piedmont Credit Union, a North Carolina credit union with 6,000 members representing a dozen employers.

These recent events built on a strong performance last year – for a fun summary, see our 2015 Online Annual Report.  Last year, we made $308 million in loans that helped create new homeowners, launched small businesses, revitalized neighborhoods and expanded community facilities such as charter schools and child care centers. We’ve also increased our focus on financing for clean energy and improving access to healthy foods. Together, Self Help Credit Union and Self-Help Federal Credit Union now provide fair and affordable services to 125,000 members in North Carolina, California, Illinois and Florida. 

While providing direct banking services in the states we serve, we also fight for fair lending everywhere.

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Banking on the Greater Good: Self-Help Seminar Brings Community Lenders Together

By Mary M.
  | Apr 15, 2016

Neill Goslin at the Community Development Banking Seminar
Self-Help’s Neil Goslin, Director of Development, kicks off this year’s Community Development Banking Seminar.

What do you get when you cross a financial institution with a passion for building stronger communities?

You get a community development banker. And Self-Help had the honor of hosting more than two dozen of them this week as community development professionals from all over the country attended our Community Development Banking Seminar. 

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