What have 850,000 Canadians discovered in the past 25 years? From tangible financial strategies to helping people turn their hopes and dreams into reality – the Credit Counselling Society (CCS) has helped improve the lives of Canadians in more ways than they can measure.
Today marks 25 years since CCS, the award-winning, non-profit credit counselling organization, began helping Canadians manage their money and debt better. From its inception in 1996 with one small debt counselling office based in New Westminster, BC to currently operating in five provinces and three territories, it truly is a community-based success story, brought about by one request for help at a time.
“From our humble beginnings, our clients have now repaid over a staggering $600 million of debt,” explains President & CEO Scott Hannah. “And the impact that has had on their lives isn’t something any of us can fully appreciate. Clients have even reported that our help has saved their life or the life of a loved one.”
Seed money from various members of the credit granting community helped open its doors, but it has taken years of dedicated service by a team of committed employees and partners to take CCS to where it is today. Debt doesn’t discriminate. CCS currently serves Canadians from all walks of life in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, Saskatchewan, the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and the Yukon. Despite being tapped to replace government services in more than one province, credit counselling from a non-profit organization is still one of Canada’s best kept debt relief secrets. It’s a challenge the nation-wide team of financial educators at CCS takes on every day.
“There are weeks it’s hard to keep up with the requests,” explains Anne Arbour, Education Manager. “Where employers, financial institutions and community organizations used to have us bring information to their groups through in-person events, the resources to reach out virtually have exploded. Now we’re able to share our information online and help a much broader audience.”