How To Give Back In 2016

For credit unions looking for new and innovative ways to give back in 2016, the industry is rife with inspiration.

From local donations to fundraising in the aftermath of a disaster, the credit unions featured this week on are no stranger to giving back to the communities they serve.

Piedmont Advantage Credit Union’s roots are deep in the airline industry, but its commitment to giving back is no flight of fancy.

The 44,000-member cooperative commits serious time and energy to fundraising and community leadership in all its markets, giving both to local charities and nonprofits as well as to national causes in the credit union industry, such as the Children’s Miracle Network.

To see how the North Carolina credit union maintains a strong focus, broad reach, and internal control on social responsibility efforts, read How Piedmont Advantage Leverages Giving Back by Callahan senior writer Marc Rapport.

Redwood Credit Union is a healthy institution, with lending, savings, and profitability rates at or above the average for billion-dollar credit unions. But there’s more to its health than metrics.

The 200,000-member RCU has built a close bond with the communities it serves in its 16-branch Northern California network by giving back through programs like its Random Acts of Kindness. Three times in the past three years, RCU has given employees and volunteers a bit of money one recent distribution was $20 each and sent them forth to do good.

To see how the credit union arms its staff and volunteers with cold, hard cash and challenges them to spread warmth and kindness read, The Random Acts Of A Credit Union’s Kindness by Marc Rapport.

Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union, the third-oldest credit union in the United States, celebrated its 104th anniversary on Friday, Feb. 12.

It’s a happy time for the credit union that serves communities stretching from northwest Massachusetts it borders Boston to southeastern New Hampshire. This year, the credit union’s anniversary coincides with a quarterly giveback program it sponsors called Give A Click.

In A Contest That Shows The Money And Much More by Callahan associate editor Erik Payne, see how the credit unionurges its community to get out the vote to shed light on local nonprofits.

During the 2015 California wildfire season, one of the most damaging blazes in California history the Valley Fire caused an estimated $700 million in damage, destroyed 1,300 homes as well as several hundred other structures, and killed four people.

Much of the fire was in Lake County, a major market for Redwood Credit Union and, more importantly, home or close to it to many of its more than 200,000 members.

In A Natural Response In The Face Of Disaster, Marc Rapport tells the story of how Redwood raised more than $2 million and gained the respect of and friendship of the community it serves.

How much money did credit unions lend in 2015? How much loan interest did credit unions return to members? How many institutions offered financial education? All that and more in the 2015 Credit Union Impact Report by Sam Taft, Callahan’s director of industry analysis.

According to estimates from Callahan & Associates’ FirstLook program, which includes year-end financial information for more than 6,000 credit unions, the industry distributed $5.3 billion in member dividends in 2015. To see which cooperatives lead the industry, please read Sam Taft’s 10 Credit Union Leaders In Dividend Payout.

Happy Reading!

February 15, 2016

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