By stretching themselves and their organisations, the entrants for all categories are the real change makers, the Winners are the “real deal” and should be applauded.

Neither the "Filenes" nor the "Bidens" are a “shoe in”.  The entry process is hard, being a test of an individual’s and a credit union’s .....

  • Energy – unflagging stamina
  • Enthusiasm – motivating self and others
  • Expertise – knowing what to do in a given situation
  • Experience – a mature and balanced approach
  • Endeavour – showing versatility to overcome problems
  • Enterprise – developing  trading skills
  • Evolution – recognising the need to change track
  • Empathy – appreciating the needs of and having the ability to dispense “tough love” to others
  • Selflessness – the strength of character to put the desired objective before the individual
  • Self sacrifice – the acceptance of some personal discomfort to achieve the objective

Development Educators worldwide are the natural pathfinders of the Co-operative Credit Union movement everywhere.  They see a societal need and endeavour to satisfy it.  Often their sheer natural exuberance and passion create a slipstream and they pull others along with them to fulfil a project.  This demonstrates leadership skillsets through example, far more potent than by authority alone.

Entrants or those nominating them must provide details of past, current or ongoing "sharp end" DE projects that have taken “ten hours, days, months or years” describing:-

  • The objective nature of the project – that can include a change of objective
  • Key tasks that were undertaken
  • Difficulties encountered and overcome or not so.  There is no shame in failure, the failure is not trying.
  • Outcomes:- that must be proven ones for a complete project or in the case of a “work in progress”, tangible evidence of advances made.

It has been found by the Awards Office that entrants often require further information and there has been a need to talk to someone about their entries, so as it plays no part in the judging process, the Awards Office can be contacted for this assistance at any time.  

All enquiries are welcome but here are a few guidance notes and answers to FAQs

  • Entrants should provide details of all their DE qualifications.​
  • Entries must be submitted online using the template entry form provided - in bullet form, no essays please!
  • The narrative of every entry should contain enough evidence (facts!) – explaining what was done – and the aim of the project.
  • Where possible, every entry should provide proof of success and where relevant - proven statistics, graphs, testimonials including from the media and other organisations, which can be uploaded as attachments to the Entry Form.
  • To aid the Judging Panel, reference should be made in the texts to the title of any accompanying documents and visual materials being submitted.
  • All entries must be original work by the entrant.

For obvious reasons, these Awards don’t count towards the Edward Filene Supreme Award for Social Entrepreneurship – Great Britain and Ireland.

Entry Period

Sadly because of the current Covid-19 pandemic, the Awards process is postponed for the time being.  As soon as it's feasible to restart, all credit unions and credit unionists will be advised and given three months' notice of the closure date. Details of new arrangements for the announcement of Award winners and presentations of trophies will be advised at that time.


  1. When the independent Judges have made their decisions on the Winners, Runners up and Highly Commended, they will be notified and invited to make a film covering the activity described in their entry of no longer than 5 minutes duration, this will be edited professionally for showing at any Awards Ceremony. 
  2. Full instructions on how to make this film and to whom it should be sent and by when will be provided.

Here is the link to the Entry Form and do contact us at the Awards Office with any queries and guidance on the Awards criteria.

Good fortune with your entries!