Credit unions exist solely to serve their members, not to pay high dividends to share holders. Credit union income is returned to members, offering higher deposit rates and lower rates on loans.The World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) defines credit unions as "not-for-profit cooperative institutions." In practice however, legal arrangements vary by jurisdiction. For example in Canada credit unions are regulated as for-profit institutions, and view their mandate as earning a reasonable profit to enhance services to members and ensure stable growth. This difference in viewpoints reflects credit unions' unusual organizational structure, which attempts to solve the principal-agent problem by ensuring that the owners and the users of the institution are the same people. In any case, credit unions generally cannot accept donations and must be able to prosper in a competitive market economy.
More about Credit Unions at Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Credit_union