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Cooperatives are based on the values of self-help, self-responsibility, democracy, equality, equity and solidarity. Cooperative members believe in the ethical values of honesty, openness, social responsibility and caring for others.

The values statement derived from the FCS Financial staff is very similar. Our member-customers expect our actions to be consistent with our words and our words consistent with our intentions.

There are seven principles that guide a cooperative. Following each principle is an FCS Financial fact.

1. Voluntary and Open Membership

Cooperatives are voluntary organizations, open to all persons able to use their services and willing to accept the responsibilities of membership, without gender, social, racial, political or religious discrimination.

FCS Financial has more than 15,000 member-owners.

2. Democratic Member Control

Cooperatives are democratic organizations controlled by their members, who actively participate in setting their policies and making decisions. Men and women serving as elected representatives are accountable to the membership. In primary cooperatives members have equal voting rights (one member, one vote) and cooperatives at other levels are also organized in a democratic manner.

FCS Financial member-owners annually elect directors to serve on our Board of Directors. The Board consists of 12 members elected by stockholders and three appointed directors.

3. Member Economic Participation

Members contribute equitably to, and democratically control, the capital of their cooperative. At least part of that capital is usually the common property of the cooperative. Members usually receive limited compensation, if any, on capital subscribed as a condition of membership. Members allocate surpluses for any or all of the following purposes: developing their cooperative, possibly by setting up reserves, part of which at least would be indivisible; benefiting members in proportion to their transactions with the cooperative; and supporting other activities approved by the membership.

FCS Financial members must purchase stock in order to become an FCS Financial member. At the end of the year, the Board of Directors will determine if a patronage payment will be paid to stockholders based on the performance of the cooperative.

4. Autonomy and Independence

Cooperatives are autonomous, self-help organizations controlled by their members. If they enter into agreements with other organizations, including governments, or raise capital from external sources, they do so on terms that ensure democratic control by their members and maintain their cooperative autonomy.

FCS Financial hosts annual stockholder meetings to provide guidance and input to our cooperative’s leadership.

5. Education, Training and Information

Cooperatives provide education and training for their members, elected representatives, managers, and employees so they can contribute effectively to the development of their cooperatives. They inform the general public - particularly young people and opinion leaders - about the nature and benefits of cooperation.

FCS Financial provides educational events for the agricultural community. We sponsored the development of new Agricultural Business Management curriculum for vocational agriculture programs at the high school and junior college level. Staff provides support to their local 4-H and FFA organizations through sponsorships, contest judging and volunteering at events.

6. Cooperation among Cooperatives

Cooperatives serve their members most effectively and strengthen the cooperative movement by working together through local, national, regional and international structures.

FCS Financial collaborates with other sister cooperatives to strengthen our technology resources used to provide loans to member-owners. We also collaborate across the Farm Credit System through the Farm Credit Foundations and Farm Credit Council.

7. Concern for Community

Cooperatives work for the sustainable development of their communities through policies approved by their members.

FCS Financial cares about rural Missouri communities. We provide Shaping Rural Missouri Grants to 4-H and FFA chapters throughout our service area as well as scholarships to graduating high school seniors. FCS Financial is an active member of Missouri Farmers Care and a supporter of the Missouri State Fair. Last, but not least, we know our staff volunteer countless hours at youth and community betterment activities in their area.
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Over $1.5 million given to local 4-H and FFA organizations

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