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Stepping Stones Community Marks First Anniversary
NEW CASTLE, Del. (4/2/13)--Stepping Stones Community FCU, Wilmington, Del., the first credit union chartered in Delaware since 1984, celebrated the one-year anniversary of its grand opening March 16.

Alice Smith, Delaware Credit Union League communications director, interviewed Rashmi Rangan, executive director of the Delaware Community Reinvestment Action Council Inc. (DRAC); Jacqueline McDonald, Stepping Stones Community FCU volunteer manager; Theresa Hasson, Stepping Stones Community FCU board chair; and Blanche Jackson, volunteer and mentor (DELCU News Spring/Summer 2013).

With 148 members and $1.3 million in assets as of Jan. 31, Stepping Stones Community FCU is "only a few miles into a thousand-mile journey," Rangan told the league. Nearly 90 of the members are of modest means and about 50 have never held a bank account, Rangan said.

Rangan expressed her gratitude for the support of Delaware State Police FCU. She called Jackson, who serves as executive vice president of $119 million Georgetown, Del. credit union, Stepping Stone Community's "emergency hotline." Delaware State Police FCU also helped Stepping Stone Community FCU with its business plan and security needs, Rangan said.

Teaching its members money management and saving skills are the primary goals of Stepping Stone Community FCU, McDonald told the league. Through assistance from DRAC, the credit union offers credit, tax and housing clinics.

The credit union offers two loan types. One is secured by a share account for up to $2,000. The second is an unsecured product for $500.

The credit union also used the National Credit Union Administration's Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives to facilitate its strategic planning sessions, Hasson said.  As part of the this process, Stepping Stone Community FCU is exploring participation in NCUA grant programs and the Community Development Revolving Loan Fund.
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