Using a cooperative list serve network, Mississippi credit unions are banding together this week to raise funds to help victims of last Saturday's devastating Yazoo City tornadoes while staffers from that city's lone-and undamaged-CU, the $9 million BenchSmart FCU, were out shopping for "care baskets."
"We're doing all we can to help those members who lost so much in the tornadoes," said Priscilla Smith, a teller handling phone duty while the management staff was in nearby Jackson buying care packages of toiletries, paper goods, flashlights etc. for distribution.
Meanwhile, the Mississippi Credit Union Association said a makeshift "listserve-a-thon" has developed in which CUs across the state are making online donations to a fund to aid the families in recovery.
"I'm thrilled that we've been able to get this kind of cooperation from Mississippi credit unions contributing on a regular hourly basis on this message board we started," said Mansel Guerry, president/CEO of the MS Employees FCU of Jackson.
The first contribution was pledged hours after Dawn Parks, CEO of BenchSmart, sent out a message to other CEOs about coordinating the distribution of the "care baskets."
Two hours later, more than $6,000 in contributions were received from credit unions, league chapters and others to support the relief effort, said Guerry. "I'm hoping now by next week we'll have at least $12,000." At last count the fund had reached $8,500.