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UCU AGM finds about credit union’s extraordinary results in 2022 Alexander Vindman speaks to capacity crowd at CIUS’s 2023 Shevchenko Lecture in Edmonton

May 4, 2023 | Canada, Featured, Business, News, Life, Community

Yaroslaw Borys presents a cheque to Bishop of the Eparchy of Toronto & Eastern Canada Bryan Bayda

New Pathway – Ukrainian News

The year 2022 was, by all accounts, not an ordinary one for Ukrainian Credit Union Limited. Just like for all Ukrainians across the globe, the year was first and foremost marked by the barbarous russian aggression against Ukraine. The credit union rose to the occasion and, over the course of the year, invested an unprecedented $1 million to help Ukrainians in Ukraine defend their freedom and to provide support for those forced to migrate to Canada under the CUAET program.

UCU donated to local, national, and international organizations that provided, and continue to provide, humanitarian aid and non-lethal supplies to Ukraine and war migrant reception in Canada including:
• $100,000 – Canada-Ukraine Foundation
• $100,000 – Ukrainian War Veterans Association of Canada
• $100,000 – UNF Foundation directed to UNF Toronto migrant assistance programs
• $30,000 – UCMAO Foundation shipment of medical supplies
• $10,000 – United 24 purchase of emergency transport vehicle

In addition, UCU Helps Ukraine, the credit union’s in-house fundraising program led by staff volunteers, increased its efforts to provide financial aid to wounded Ukrainian soldiers and expanded its mandate to supply life-saving equipment to Ukrainian Armed Forces battalions. The program raised over $670,000 in additional funding from UCU members for Ukrainian soldiers fighting on the front lines of the war.

L-R: UCU CEO Taras Pidzamecky; UCU COO Roman Litwinchuk and UCU CFO Bradley Sutherland

At the UCU’s 79th Annual and General Meeting, on Wednesday, April 26, attended by over 250 UCU members, the credit union made two donations. Alexandra Chyczij, President of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress was presented with a $15,000 donation, and Most Reverend Bishop Bryan Bayda of the Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of Toronto and Eastern Canada accepted a $10,000 donation for the church’s missionary work in the Maritimes and Newfoundland.

All these investments in helping Ukraine overcome the aggression and in the development of the domestic communities received a solid financial footing in 2022. In 2022, UCU remained the largest Ukrainian Canadian credit union by asset size, number of branches (14 altogether) and membership. UCU’s total assets grew to $1.248 billion while its net income posted a record $4.561 million. UCU is currently the 41st credit union in Canada by asset size (up one spot from the previous rating).

Yaroslaw Borys presents a cheque to UCC President Aleksandra Chyczij

The number of members increased to 27,720. Promptly after the onset of the full-scale russian invasion of Ukraine, UCU took quick efforts to implement its Welcome Ukraine program for newly arriving Ukrainians, helping them establish a financial base in Canada. The program offers multi-year no-fee bank accounts, non-secured credit cards, and access to financial services that newcomers may not be able to receive elsewhere.

UCU also enhanced its onboarding process to permit qualifying individuals from Ukraine, other European countries, or anywhere else in the world (with the exception of rogue states). As a result, last year UCU welcomed over 2,000 displaced Ukrainians into its membership. This echoed an earlier period in the credit union’s history when it took in Ukrainian refugees from post-World War II Europe.

Ukrainian Credit Union also supported Ukrainian Canadian Congress National’s work with the Government of Canada which issued a Ukraine Sovereignty Bond. UCU Wealth Strategies Group helped many of UCU’s members set up brokerage accounts to buy the 5-year government-backed bond. Funds raised from the sale of the bonds were transferred to the government of Ukraine and used to maintain essential services during the war.

At the AGM, the outgoing Chair of the Board Yaroslaw (Slawko) Borys, who reached his term limit as Board Chair, received recognition from the Board and members. His chairmanship has been marked by UCU’s constant growth in financial strength and its increasing support for Ukraine, the Ukrainian Canadian and wider Canadian communities. Slawko Borys will remain on the Board in the capacity of Director.

Dr. Natalia Lishchyna

Following the AGM, the UCU Board appointed Dr. Natalia Lishchyna as its first-ever female chair. Dr. Lishchyna first joined the UCU Board in 2017 and has served as Vice Chair for the past three years. “I am honoured to join an esteemed group of predecessors who have led Ukrainian Credit Union over the last 79 years,” said Dr. Lishchyna. “I’m especially thankful to Slawko Borys for his wisdom, energy, and exemplary dedication to the role of Chair of the Board for the past five years.” Dr. Lishchyna said that she looks forward to working with the Board, management, and staff to continue building a bright future for UCU members and the Ukrainian Canadian community.

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