Frenchtown Community Credit Union opens in spring

Frenchtown residents said they are looking forward to their first community credit union scheduled to open the end of spring to early summer.

Residents expressed great pleasure with the timing of the credit union, which coincides with the continued revitalization of the Frenchtown neighborhood.

‘‘I’m excited about the opening of the credit union,” said Annie S. Harris, owner of Ash Gallery located in Frenchtown. “One of the things to have part of the revitalization is to have a place where you can bank, shop and café within walking distance.”

This credit union will be the first community-based, federally chartered financial institution titled Frenchtown Community Credit Union.

The FCCU promised to provide residents and clients the sustainable wealth-building initiatives by addressing the needs of the disinvested community.

“Although there are a number of financial institutions in the Tallahassee area, none have made inroads in forging a reciprocal relationship among the FCCU’s proposed field of membership, Frenchtown’s natural stakeholders,” said Keith Bowers, director of the Economic Development Ministry and credit union organizer.

FCCU vows to make credit and financial services available to those who live, work, worship and operate businesses as well as attend schools in the Frenchtown Community.

The Bethel Missionary Baptist Church’s Economic Development Ministry (EDM) is helping the credit union assemble resources.

“The EMD is how we create jobs, welfare to owner,” said Rev. R.B. Holmes, Jr., pastor of the Bethel Missionary Baptist Church.

” It is how we help people restore.”

FCCU plans to offer affordable checking and savings accounts and initiative financial literacy program.

Bowers said FCCU wants the entire community to see the credit union as its financial institution and themselves as the owners and benefactors of the credit union.

“The primary objective is to establish a viable financial institution that focuses on making credit and financial services available to those who live, work, worship, operate businesses, attend schools and participate in associations headquartered in the Frenchtown community and their family members,” Bowers said.

“I can’t wait to open an account with FCCU,” said Harris who is also a resident.

In the future, FCCU plans to enter into the mortgage lending industry to expand products and services as the institution becomes more established and has the financial capacity to do so.