In Other News
South Jersey Federal Credit Union, Deptford, N.J., marked the grand opening of its sixth and newest branch in Voorhees recently with a reception and ribbon-cutting ceremony in the lobby of its new branch. The Voorhees branch is located in Eagle Plaza, at 700 Haddonfield-Berlin Road.
Northeast Credit Union, Portsmouth, N.H., recently announced that its new branch in Lee is now open to serve the community. The Lee location is a full-service branch that offers a drive-up ATM that is accessible 24 hours-a-day, seven days-a-week, and four drive-up teller lanes. This branch also offers services such as new account openings, deposit services, and a full range of mortgages, consumer loans and small business offerings. The Lee Branch will soon feature a financial education center, containing helpful articles and credit counseling information for members.
Tucson Old Pueblo Credit Union, Tucson, Ariz., recently announced that new construction began on its new branch just east of Harrison. A groundbreaking ceremony was held to celebrate. The credit union expects the construction to be complete in early 2008.
Oregon Community Credit Union, Springfield, Ore., officially opened the doors to its new Mohawk Branch recently. The credit union moved the branch across the street from its previous location in order to improve service for members who live or work in the Springfield area. The new branch is much larger inside and features more parking than the old location. Additionally, because the branch was moved from a strip mall location to a stand-alone building, the credit union was able to implement drive-thru teller and ATM services for their members. A grand opening celebration and a ribbon cutting ceremony commemorated the event.
Franklin Mint Federal Credit Union, Broomall, Pa., and Chester Community Improvement Project partnered together to make 2007 Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program in the City of Chester a success. This is FMFCU's fourth year being involved with the program. During a special Volunteer Recognition ceremony held at Chester City Hall, FMFCU employees were recognized for volunteering their time to help prepare and file returns for City of Chester residents. Ruth E. Kauffman; Stefanie Henson; Cecily Venkatesh, Swarthmore; Blesson Koshy, Springfield and Richard B. Elam Sr. were all recognized and thanked for their participation. In addition, Mortgage Specialists Jackie Werner and Sharon F. Flynn at Chester Community Improvement Project were recognized for volunteering in the program. This year, VITA volunteers, all of whom are certified by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) prepared and electronically filed 126 returns free of charge in two locations, the Credit Union's Chester branch office and at the Chester Baptist Church. VITA Site Coordinator Richard B. Elam Sr. reported that one volunteer from the credit union went above and beyond the call of duty by taking a resident to Chester City's Social Security office to obtain needed information for her tax return.
Pacific Service Credit Union, Walnut Creek, Calif., recently announced a donation of $5,000 for the San Jose Repertory Theatre for continued support of the Red Ladder Theatre Company. The Red Ladder Theatre Company works with underserved and disadvantage communities to improve and enrich lives through theater arts. Red Ladder Theatre Company is the social outreach branch of San Jose Repertory Theatre, which was formed in 1992. Pacific Service Credit Union has supported the organization for the past three years.
Vantage Credit Union, East St. Louis, Mo., recently donated $5,000 to Jackie Joyner-Kersee to help support continued development of the the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Center. Hoosman, an East St. Louis native and a graduate of the East St. Louis public school system, appreciates the dedication of Jackie Joyner-Kersee and all that her foundation offers the community. Vantage Credit Union and its employees demonstrate their commitment to the credit union philosophy of People Helping People by contributing time, money and knowledge to people who need it most. Each year, Vantage gives back to the communities in which it operates by donating thousands of dollars to worthwhile charities, awarding $37,500 in college scholarships, as well as providing free financial education presentations and materials to students.
Leominster Credit Union, Leominster, Mass., recently donated $5,000 to Terry Kennedy who accepted it on behalf of ARC Community Services. The $5,000 is the third installment of a $25,000 pledge made by LCU last fall to support ARC's "Building for the Future" Capital Campaign. ARC Community Services is a nonprofit agency that has provided services since 1952 to developmentally disabled children, adults and their families. Assisting over 500 individuals each year in 28 contiguous towns in north central Massachusetts, ARC Community Services presently provides nearly two dozen critical support programs. With a goal of raising $4 million, contributed funds will be used to renovate and modernize ARC's headquarters at 554-564 Main Street in Fitchburg. The renovations are important because continuing to run programs in the old building limits the quality and quantity of services ARC can provide.
Founders Federal Credit Union, Lancaster, S.C., recently made a huge leap in the fight against cancer with its Lancaster County Relay for Life Team. Together, the 32-person team raised almost $11,400 for the American Cancer Society by selling everything from lunch and breakfast, to bracelets and luminaries. They also sold tickets to raffle off three great prizes: three days, two nights at Springmaid Beach; four tickets to Carowinds; and 14-Seat Sky Box at Knight's Stadium. During the night of the walk, Founders employees sold hot dogs, drinks and funnel cakes while they took turns participating in the walk. Founders Kids Savings Club mascot Daniel the Spaniel even made an appearance during the night to greet the children.
The Kennebec Valley Chapter of Credit Unions, Fairfield, Maine, drew more than 100 juniors and seniors from eight area high school to the first-ever Financial Fitness Money Management Experience event for the Kennebec Valley region. The event was held recently at Kennebec Valley Community College. The Financial Fitness Money Management Experience was created to address the growing need for increased financial literacy in Maine schools and the lack of understanding that many teens experience with regard to their personal finances. The half-day event is unique because it allows students to consider a serious issue in a fun way. Students are asked to participate in an interactive "game of life," in which they map out what their financial future would be at the age of 22, according to a scenario packet that they receive, which determines their occupation, income and credit history. Students then have the task of creating a "Spending Plan" according to their income and expenses. Representatives from the Kennebec Valley Chapter of Credit Unions, the Maine Credit Union League, the Maine Council on Economic Education and Central Maine Community College have helped to organize the Financial Fitness Money Management Experience. The event closed out a month-long list of activities coordinated by Maine's credit unions as part of Governor Baldacci's proclamation of April as "Financial Literacy for Youth" month, a proclamation that praises the efforts of Maine's credit unions on behalf youth financial education.
Chartway Federal Credit, Virginia Beach, Va., has awarded a $7,500 grant to F.A.C.T. (Families of Autistic Children in Tidewater) to help send area children to summer camp. The grant will be used to underwrite expenses for children attending Camp Gonnawannagoagin, a camp specifically designed for children ages 4-18 with a primary diagnosis of autism. The credit union's We Promise Foundation, which has raised more than $1.5 million since 1999, commits to making a difference in the lives of children struggling with chronic illness or facing tremendous hardship. Autism, a neurological disorder that affects 1 out of every 166 children, is the fastest growing developmental disability in the country. Currently, there is no cure for the disease. F.A.C.T. is a local nonprofit organization that promotes the creation of social and recreational programs designed to meet the unique needs of children with autism. Its summer camp features arts and crafts, boating, karate and yoga and is an
exciting solution for autistic children who might otherwise be unable to participate in these activities.
Hanscom Federal Credit Union, Hanscom AFB, Mass., was a major sponsor of the annual awards ceremony for the 66th Air Base Wing, an organization stationed at Hanscom Air Force Base in support of the Electronic Systems Center mission. The annual awards recognize the highest-performing members of the Air Base Wing. In recognition of their efforts, the 28 nominees and guests enjoyed three days of sightseeing and celebration in the Boston area.
HAR-CO Maryland Federal Credit Union, Bel Air, Md., began offering free financial and retirement planning services to members in its branches. These services are offered through an alliance with Maryland Agency Financial Group (MAFG), a financial planning firm founded over 25 years ago. MAFG provides personal financial planning in credit unions and with Maryland's public school system. MAFG has been acknowledged throughout the state and formally recognized by the U.S. Treasury Department as a "model for others to emulate." MAFG will work with credit union members through a financial discovery process. This step-by-step approach helps members identify and focus on their unique goals and objectives. This process is designed to help identify current financial status, determine financial objectives and address ways to achieve those goals. Planners will help members analyze alternatives, design a plan to meet their goals and Implement the plan. Among the products and services MAFG can offer members are retirement planning, including IRA, 410K and SEP plans, mutual fund investments, low cost term insurance, long term care insurance, life insurance and a complete financial analyses. The planning and analysis services are free to all HAR-CO members.