Chesterfield and North East Derbyshire Credit Union launched in 1998 with less than 100 members- 20 years later, that number has steadily risen to more than 5,000.
The non-profit making financial organisation, set up to help members of the community, turns 21 this year,
With the help of the Credit Union, those who can’t get access to ordinary bank products can.
The organisation also provides loans with flexible terms and repayments at affordable interest rates- a welcome alternative to pay day loans or door step lending, which have become a 'real problem' in the county.
The idea is that all members benefit mutually as there is no profit for third party shareholders.
Councillor Emily Coy, of Chesterfield Borough Council, popped in to congratulate manager Alan Ward.
Mr Ward explained how the credit union works to promote wise money management and encourage the habit of saving among children at local primary schools.
Coun Coy, who is a qualified accountant, said: “It’s a scandal that in Britain today there are 1.7 million people without a bank account and eight million experiencing problem debt.
"40 per cent of the working-age population have less than £100 in savings.
"The Credit Union works for the benefit of the community- and whether as savers or borrowers, it is something we can all support."