The Association of Vermont Credit Unions is sharing timely information on how CUs can improve how they offer financial advice and counseling to victims of natural disasters such as the Joplin, Mo., tornado this week.
“We’ve had our own flooding disaster on Lake Champlain this spring and so we’re glad we can pass along something that was given to us,” said John Cote, director of information services, referring to a co-op webinar being conducted June 7 by the Extension Services of the University of Minnesota and North Dakota State University.
The 90-minute webinar includes two programs developed by extension educators – “Money Management in Times of Disaster” and “After Disaster: The Family Financial Toolkit.” The webinar is designed for financial counselors aiding disaster survivors in helping “put the pieces of their financial recovery together.”
Cote said his Vermont group received notice of the webinar from a Vermont coop agency which began circulating the information, and the Joplin tragedy makes it ever more urgent.
"At no time in U.S. history has there been such a far-reaching occurrence of significant natural disasters,” noted the association. “These disasters wreak havoc on the financial well-being of those in their path. Family financial recovery is a long-term process and decisions made at the time of a natural disaster affect the financial well-being of survivors for a life time.”
Moreover, said the association, “There are also actions people can take in advance of a natural disaster which will lessen the financial impact.”
The University of Minnesota said the cost of the webinar is being funded by grants from the National Institute for Food and Agriculture.