Awards and Accolades

2017 Awards and Accolades

ACU receives the National Credit Union Social Responsibility Award Expand/Collapse

On May 9, 2017, Assiniboine Credit Union received the National Credit Union Social Responsibility Award for our Eco-Excellence Program.

This award is one of five national awards granted by the Canadian Credit Union Association (CCUA), which acknowledges the accomplishments of credit unions that exemplify the true nature of the co-operative spirit. The prestigious Social Responsibility Award focuses national attention on the leadership, innovation and advancement that credit unions are demonstrating in their social and environmental performance.

About the Eco-Excellence Program

  • Since launching the Eco-Excellence Program in 2012, ACU has reduced our greenhouse gas emissions by 56%.
  • We have succeeded in fully integrating continuous improvement of environmental performance in our core business and culture.
  • See ACU Receives National Awards for Social Responsibility and Leadership for more details on how we achieved these significant results.

Assiniboine Credit Union Selected as one of Canada's Greenest Employers Expand/Collapse

Earth Day, April 22, 2017 – For the fifth year in a row, Assiniboine Credit Union has been selected as one of Canada's Greenest Employers. This honor is awarded to employers who lead the nation in creating a culture of environmental awareness.

Since launching an Eco-Excellence Program in 2012, ACU has reduced our greenhouse gas emissions by 56%! We have succeeded in fully integrating continuous improvement of environmental performance in our core business and culture.

The reduction in GHGs included:

  • Reducing internal paper consumption by 50%, reducing external paper use by 80%, and switching to 100% post-consumer waste (PCW) paper.
  • Decreasing the impact of employee commuting by 41%.
  • Diverting 4 tonnes of recyclables from the landfill, of which 1300 kilograms was organic waste diverted through a partnership with Compost Winnipeg, a new local social enterprise.
  • Designing four branches with geothermal or district energy to heat and cool the buildings. Branches built since 2010 feature LED lighting.
  • Completing Power Smart for Buildings renovations or retrofits at six ACU locations, and getting our branch at 200 Main Street designated as a Bike Friendly Workplace.

Assiniboine Credit Union demonstrated that reducing our impact on the environment and contributing positively to the environment we all live in is not only a responsible thing to do, but it is also a successful business model as people increasingly choose to work and do business with companies that align with their environmental values.

This is one more example of how being a part of Assiniboine Credit Union ensures that you are contributing to something positive here in our community.

To learn more, visit 2017 Canada's Greenest Employers.

About Assiniboine Credit Union
Assiniboine Credit Union is a financial co-operative in Manitoba with branches in Winnipeg, Thompson and Gillam. As a proud member of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV), ACU uses its expertise and resources to foster self-reliant and sustainable communities, while taking care to consider the impact of business decisions on employees, members, the environment and the communities it serves.

Assiniboine Credit Union Named One of Manitoba's Top 25 Employers Expand/Collapse

Winnipeg, Manitoba — November 30, 2016
Assiniboine Credit Union is one of Manitoba's Top 25 Employers for 2017, in part for looking beyond the financial bottom line and taking up the promise to put people and planet first, on the path to prosperity.

Making a difference for employees, members, and the community is an authentic part of ACU's DNA, says ACU President & CEO Kevin Sitka.

"At Assiniboine Credit Union our employees aim to set an example, that we can be a world-class financial institution and, at the same time, strengthen the fabric of our communities by ensuring access to fair and affordable financial services for all," Sitka adds.

One of the recent community impact opportunities offered to ACU employees is the Each One Teach One financial literacy program. This program trains employees to facilitate, on a volunteer basis, up to 17 different one-hour workshops on everything from how to save money to how to use credit wisely.

"Once trained, employees are able to deliver financial empowerment workshops to various groups in our community. We know that banking can be intimidating, and through this plain language program individuals can ask questions about how to open an account, what interest is, and how mortgages work," says Kim Champion Taylor, ACU's Vice-President of People Solutions.

Manichan Luangkhot, Financial Account Manager and one of ACU's first Each One Teach One training coaches, says "I am thrilled about becoming a coach; it aligns with my core passion of building knowledge for our communities. I am thankful to Assiniboine Credit Union for the opportunity to share my extensive experience and expertise with others who want to learn more about their finances."

ACU's employee commitment to social impact runs deeper than volunteerism — it is not uncommon for an ACU employee to be working on the financing of an important community project such as a housing co-op for seniors, or for a small team to be designing an innovative solution to meet a community need, like a program that supports foreign-trained professionals while they become accredited to work in Canada.

In addition to ACU's commitment to making a difference in the community, the credit union invests in employee professional development, training and education. ACU provides tuition subsidies for job-related courses, a variety of in-house and online training programs, and professional accreditation.

ACU also offers impressive benefits. New employees receive three weeks paid vacation, and ACU will consider previous work experience when determining individual vacation allowance.

ACU offers a competitive extended health and dental plan for full- and part-time employees, including a Health Care Spending Account that allows employees flexibility in offsetting some medical costs. They can even use it to purchase a gym membership.

As a financial institution, ACU provides staff with a wide range of special banking benefits, such as matched pension contributions, retirement planning assistance, and phased-in work options to help retiring employees transition to life after work.

Along with being one of Manitoba's Top 25 Employers, Assiniboine Credit Union was also named one of Canada's Greenest Employers last year—which translates into an additional employee benefit. ACU participates in the Winnipeg Transit EcoPass program, making bus passes available to employees at a reduced rate which makes commuting to and from work easy, affordable and sustainable.

As Champion Taylor puts it, "ACU employees are truly unique. They want to be a part of a successful organization, in the traditional sense, but they also want to do more, like supporting positive affordable housing solutions, and opening a branch in Winnipeg's North End after other banks abandon the area. They want to be part of an organization that sees the importance of financial literacy and lends its expertise to educate. Our employees want to be part of an organization that makes a difference for every member and for the communities we serve."

MediaCorp, the organization that manages Canada's Top 100 Employers, has recognized ACU with Top Employer awards in both national and regional categories several times since 2006 including being named Canada's Greenest Employer and Best Employer for New Canadians in that time. This year's recognition was announced in a special Winnipeg Free Press supplement published November 30, 2016.

Assiniboine Credit Union has 18 branches in Manitoba, 115,000 members, 450 employees and $4.3 billion in assets. It is the largest credit union by membership and branches and second largest by assets in Manitoba.

2016 Awards and Accolades

National Community Economic Development Award Expand/Collapse

In 2016, Assiniboine received the National Community Economic Development Award for opening a branch in the North End of Winnipeg.

This award is one of five national awards granted by the Canadian Credit Union Association (CCUA) which acknowledges the accomplishments of credit unions that exemplify the true nature of the cooperative spirit.

The prestigious Community Economic Development Award focuses national attention on the leadership role credit unions play in inspiring others to shape promising futures within their communities.

About the North End Branch
In an area that big banks had abandoned, residents were left with limited access to financial services. Payday lenders, pawn shops and rent-to-own businesses had moved in providing limited and very expensive services. Assiniboine recognized a need and worked with community partners and early investors to develop a plan to provide residents and businesses the financial services they needed.

At the heart of Assiniboine's values, putting people before profits was the centre of the decision to open a branch in the North End. In 2012, Assiniboine opened their new branch with one specific purpose in mind - to provide access to inclusive financial services for people who have been excluded by mainstream banks.

Showcasing the true nature of the cooperative spirit of credit unions to serve underserved populations, Assiniboine is proud to play a role in this thriving community.

Canada's Greenest Employers Expand/Collapse

Assiniboine Credit Union has been selected as one of Canada's Greenest Employers for four years in a row – 2012 – 2016.

With employee involvement initiatives such as an Eco Excellence Team, organizational initiatives such as a green procurement strategy and in-house waste reduction programs and audits, Assiniboine has proven its commitment to working toward reducing their environmental impact.

Assiniboine has been recognized specifically for a host of incentives for employees to leave their cars at home – from subsidized bus passes to carpool matching services, all of which help to reduce the environmental impact of commuting.

Alongside that, Assiniboine has won three golds and a silver in the Green Action Centre's Commuter Challenge. Employee engagement in this challenge is outstanding, with an average of over 40% of employees participating annually.

Assiniboine's commitment to the triple bottom line of people, planet and prosperity is evident and they are proud to be recognized for their efforts of incorporating environmental values into their corporate culture.

2015 Awards and Accolades

Assiniboine Credit Union 2015 Recipient of the National Credit Union Social Responsibility Award Expand/Collapse

On May 7, 2015, Canadian Credit Union Association (formerly Credit Union Central of Canada (CUCC)) honoured the winners of its annual National Credit Union Awards Program at a gala in Banff, AB. At this event, Assiniboine Credit Union became the proud recipient of the 2015 National Credit Union Social Responsibility Award for our work with partners to develop Winnipeg's first Asset Building program.

Assiniboine created the Asset Building Program for qualified members where every dollar participants saved is matched three-to-one, with funds raised by non-profit community partners.

The idea behind the program is to find a way to help alleviate poverty in the community. Participants in the program choose a savings goal an asset — something that would help improve the quality of their life. This 'asset' could be money for education, a computer, or even a pair of glasses.

Since the program's inception in 2007, more than 3,300 Manitobans have benefitted from the Asset Building Program. Collectively, participants have saved $1.2 million dollars, bolstered by $2.9 million in matching funds. Assiniboine employees embraced their supporting roles and in 2014 alone, 75% of employees raised $80,000 for Asset Building programs through the United Way campaign.

At the May 7 event, Assiniboine also received a $10,000 donation through the Concentra emPOWERING Your Communities campaign for Recognition Counts.

Recognition Counts is a program that helps ensure that skilled immigrants obtain the credentials needed to work in their trades or professions here in Canada.

Since the program began in October 2012, 132 loans have been approved to assist skilled immigrants to become gainfully employed with the vast majority of them employed in their primary field of training. Of these loans, 12 have been fully repaid and none of the participants have defaulted on their loan.

This program is one of the many ways that ACU is using finance for good, to create significant social impact as a values-driven financial co-operative.

Assiniboine Credit Union Named One of Manitoba's Top 25 Employers Expand/Collapse

November 4, 2014
Assiniboine Credit Union has been recognized as one of Manitoba's Top 25 Employers for 2015. This is the third consecutive year that ACU has won the award – an annual competition to determine which Manitoban employers lead their industries in offering exceptional workplaces for their employees.

Now entering its ninth year, Manitoba's Top 25 Employers is one of a number of regional competitions that have since spun out of the Top 100 Employers program. Employers are evaluated based on a series of eight criteria including:

  • Physical workplace
  • Work atmosphere and social
  • Health, financial and family benefits
  • Vacation and time off
  • Employee communications
  • Performance management
  • Training and skills development
  • Community involvement

As members of a socially responsible financial co-operative, Assiniboine employees value the credit union's deep commitment to the community and want to work for a place that makes a difference.

"We always look for ways to engage our employees in projects and ongoing programs that use their financial and business skills and expertise to make a difference," says ACU President and CEO Kevin Sitka. "This can range from volunteering for Habitat for Humanity to expanding our financial services to underserved households, organizations and communities."

Assiniboine carefully measures its results so that it can benchmark where it can continually improve on its promise to be a values-based financial institution. "That diligence is part of why it was recognized as a top employer in Manitoba," says ACU Vice-President of People Solutions Kim Champion Taylor.

"At ACU we survey staff often and in 2013 we heard 84 per cent of employees say that what ACU does to provide access to financial services for those not well served by other financial institutions made them feel proud to work for ACU. And 88 per cent said that what ACU does for the community and environment makes them proud to be an employee," Taylor says.


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