PROFILE OF THE BARANGKA CREDIT COOPERATIVE
Twenty-five (25) employees in a section of the U/Tex Weaving Department were usually cash-strapped. Thus, they decided to establish an informal organization called C & K Savings Association, which lasted for more than 13 years (1972 to 1985).
The association was turned into a cooperative by December 16, 1985. Thirty seven (37) cooperators pooled their resources which totaled Php 5,300.00. They named the organization C & K Barangka Community Credit Cooperative, Inc. However, several pains came with the coop’s birth. Its problems included finding a place where it can hold office, lack of supporters, U/Tex’s refusal to recognize the coop and being unacquainted with the people in barangay, among others. Its first office was in Boni Avenue, Barangka, Marikina, where the coop only stayed for a month due to lack of funds to pay for rent.
Undaunted by the difficulties, the coop transferred to Chorillo Street in Barangka, Marikina. With this move came the amendment of the coop’s name to U/Tex Employees Credit Cooperative, Inc. or UECCI.
The trials, however, did not cease. The coop had to iron out troubles, from alleged anomalies to controversies, from mismanagement to misunderstandings. Thankfully, the members’ tenacity in demanding for a better organization triumphed and new directors were elected to the seats.
Still, UECCI was to face the most excruciating blow. On March 1994, U/Tex, where most of the coop members were employed, folded up. Most of the members who incurred loans from the cooperative could not pay because they had no jobs and enough money to pay for their obligations.
The total closure of U/Tex was a big problem for the founders and members. They were forced to apply “do or die” tactics and ensure the coop’s viability through distribution of leaflets, calling on members to settle their debts by encashing their separation checks through the coop. Incentives were also provided to those who would settle their loan obligations. Landbank, through its rediscounting program, provided BCC about P 3 Million which they used to rediscount the U/Tex employees’ post-dated checks.
The coop surpassed the ordeal. Patience, strong determination, resourcefulness and prayer helped the coop surmount the problems. Moreover, the members utilized their collective ability to make their organization more community-oriented. On September 15, 1995, the coop adopted the name Barangka Credit Cooperative (BCC).
BCC operations remained small-scale and the members had to make do with limited resources. Despite these, BCC immersed in the community and provided the needed assistance for various sorts of small and microenterprises. From then on, BCC became a byword in the area.
Barangka Credit Cooperative provides several credit facilities to its members which became the coop’s main business, together with its bag making, bakeshop, water station, bayad center, money transfer ventures. The various kinds of loans it extends include commercial, discounting, microfinance, starting capital for business, salary, petty cash, pensioner and mortgage, among others.
Apart from BCC own funds, the cooperative avail of the financial assistance and grants from different organizations such as the People’s Credit & Finance Corporation, LANDBANK, Philippine Federation of Credit Cooperatives and Asian Confederation of Credit Union, etc.
Beneficiaries were also given opportunities to venture on small businesses such as sari-sari stores, specialty shops, shoe making, balut, salted eggs making, fruit vending, catering and dress making.
Provident services and support programs including time deposits, kiddie savers and savings deposits, emergency, appliance, rice and grocery loans, health maintenance, and housing lot, educational, calamity, and service vehicle assistance are also provided by BCC.
Despite BCC’s achievements, its officers believe the organization has to perform well than what is expected of it. Thus, the cooperative’s involvement goes beyond providing assistance to its members. BCC participates in various community projects such as the Clean & Green Program, anti-drug campaigns, free medical and dental services, fitness and health projects and Damayan Program. Nearby public schools are recipients of the BCC’s donations, ranging from school supplies and sports equipment to drinking fountains and musical instruments.
As a result, BCC’s contributions in enhancing the lives of its members and the community did not go unnoticed. On August 8, 2002, the Barangka Credit Cooperative was named Pinakatanging Kooperatiba in Landbank’s Gawad Pitak, Non-Agri-Based Category. BCC finally clinched the top prize, following its placing second and fourth in 1999 and 2001, respectively. And then, BCC was again awarded as Landbank’s Ginintuang Gawad Pitak Awardee with P 1 Million worth of cash in 2005. Recently, BCC received once again a recognition from NCR League – Philippine Federation of Credit Cooperatives as the 2008 Most Outstanding Cooperative in the Philippines.
With all these, the coop was able to make big strides in the community. Now, the coop served all 16 barangays in Marikina and nearby cities such as Antipolo, Montalban and San Mateo, among others with total membership of 10,719. BCC current total asset is worth P 431.5 M (as of March 2011). Its paid-up capital was posted at P 89.1 M
To accomplish coop’s plans aimed at further improving service to its members, BCC intends to stay guided by coop’s principles and fundamentals. The coop will keep its operations simple and democratic. More importantly, BCC will continue to encourage members to handle their money properly in the “cooperative way”, and that is to save first before spending.