The $3 billion Redstone Federal Credit Union, which still has two of its northern Alabama branches shuttered following the April 27 tornado siege, said Friday it is greatly expanding its relief effort to help storm victims by sponsoring a weekend cookoff for 1,000 and starting a food shuttling operation to hard-hit small towns.
More than 50 employees, their families and volunteers along with teams of individuals originally scheduled to participate in the annual Whistle Stop Festival and Rocket City BBQ in Huntsville will instead be cooking for tornado survivors, volunteers and workers this weekend.
Starting on Saturday, Redstone teams will truck food and other supplies into the many small Alabama communities which lost whole business and residential sections. Among those benefitting from the Redstone generosity will be Hackleburg, Harvest and Phil Campbell, all communities featured in network TV coverage over the past two weeks.
Meanwhile, the National Credit Union Foundation said its online CUAid program to aid CU employees who have been victims of the Southern and Midwest tornadoes has now topped $50,000 in a week’s period.
“The outpouring of support from the credit union movement has been amazing," said Christopher Morris, NCUF director of communications. “A wide range of CU organizations and individuals have helped make a big difference to those credit union people in need.”
The effort by Redstone in hard-hit northern Alabama includes distributing food to local agencies as well and they include the Salvation Army, Good Shepherd United Methodist Church, the Harvest Youth Center, First Baptist Volunteer Center, American Red Cross and agencies in Tanner, an outlying Huntsville community which sustained major damage.
Redstone said it expects to have employees start tonight “pulling pork, making and wrapping sandwiches and putting them in paper bags and boxed along with chips and a drink to be delivered.”
The boxed lunches, other supplies, including non-perishable food items and cleaning supplies, all “thoughtfully donated by Redstone Federal employees will be delivered to those hard-hit areas,” said Joseph H. Newberry, president/CEO.
“The credit union is honored to be able to offer this outreach as one of many ways we are supporting the community during the recovery and rebuilding. Teaming up with these community partners to feed so many people is a great example of the credit union motto: ‘People Helping People.’”