Blue Mountains News
A Community Bank in Blaxland with Bendigo Bank
What is this project about?
Earlier in 2018 the Commonwealth Bank closed its branch in Blaxland.
This means that there is now no bank between Springwood and Penrith, making it difficult for many people in the Lower Mountains to access a bank.
With the support of Bendigo Bank, a Steering Committee has now been formed to investigate the establishment of a Bendigo Community Bank branch in Blaxland.
A bank with full banking services, community ownership, and community-based lending.
Why a community bank?
The Community Bank initiative was developed by Bendigo Bank to assist communities to deliver their own quality banking service.
The capacity to retain local capital, or attract it to the communities where branches are located, is the most important part of the Community Bank initiative - and the cornerstone on which Bendigo Bank continues to build its business strategy.
Together Bendigo Bank and the local community share the revenue, with local surpluses available for reinvestment in the community via grants, sponsorships and dividends to local shareholders.
Katoomba has undertaken a similar project for the Upper Mountains, with a Bendigo Community Bank opening in 2009. To date the Katoomba community has seen in excess of $450,000 reinvested from the Community Bank back into local projects.
To find out more, download the 'With your pledge of support' flyer.
What does the establishment of a Community Bank in Blaxland involve?
The first step is to gather community support for the establishment of a branch of Bendigo Bank in Blaxland.
This can be done in two ways:
- Making a pledge to support the establishment of Blaxland Community Bank Branch and indicate that you would consider transferring your banking business to that branch.
- Making a pledge to contribute an amount between $500 and $20,000 to the establishment of the Blaxland Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank.
This pledge is an indication of the amount you intend to invest in shares in your local Community Bank Company. No money is required now; we are simply gauging the level of community support for the project and will keep you up-to-date on our progress.
Once we have gathered a significant level of community support, we will then be in a position to undertake a feasibility study on the practicalities of establishing a Blaxland Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank.
What can I do to help?
1. Be a customer
- indicate your desire to use the bank once established
- indicate your willingness to transfer your accounts to the community bank
2. Be a Volunteer
- Help us promote the concept in the local area
3. Be a Shareholder
- pledge to purchase shares in the community bank if it goes ahead.
You can download the Pledge Now Form, make either of the two pledges above, and return it to one of the outlets detailed on the flyer, or return it to the Lower Mountains Neighbourhood Centre, 33 Hope Street, Blaxland.
You can also consider switching your banking now to Bendigo Bank to show your support for a Blaxland Community Bank Branch.
Who can I talk to about this?
For further information about the project, please contact one of the following members of the Steering Committee, as follows:
Mobile: 0412 475 532
Office: 02 4739 0739
Mobile: 0400 167 103
This post original appeared on the Lower Mountains Neighbourhood Centre website and is reprinted here with permission.
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