MADISON, Wis.–Credit unions around the world are celebrating International Credit Union Day today.
As part of CUToday.info’s week-long series of videos from credit unions offering their take on International CU Week, CO-OP Financial Services is featured today. Its video can be found here. Videos have also appeared this week from Redwood Credit Union here, SeaComm Credit Union here, Capital Credit Union (Scotland) here. Tomorrow, Pen Air FCU’s video will be highlighted.
According to data compiled by the World Council of Credit Unions, those celebrating International Credit Union Day include 57,000 credit unions in 105 countries around the world serving 217 million members.
Meanwhile, just a few of the activities around the U.S. today among credit unions include:
- In Arkansas City, Ark., Ark Valley CU is marking International CU Day and its own 60th anniversary with refreshments at its branches and the opportunity for members to win prizes.
- In Eau Claire, Wis., Royal Credit Union will be keeping with the 2015 ICU Day theme of “People Helping People” by having donation jars in each of its offices. Members will also be able to nominate a local non-profit organization to receive the funds collected during the time the jars are in the offices—and Royal Credit Union will match donations up to $100 in each of its 24 locations. The credit union said that many of its team members will also be out in the communities today “surprising and delighting community members.”
- In Douglas, Wyo., Reliant FCU will be giving back in the community by purchasing beverages at coffee shops near each of its branches.
- In Mechanicsburg, Penn., Members 1st FCU is giving away free 2016 calendars, which feature photos taken by members of the credit union. This year’s theme is “Central PA Proud.”
- In York, Penn., White Rose Credit Union is providing a small bag of canned goods in its branches to be picked up by members to be distributed to those in need. It is also distributing a “Manifesto for Kindness.”
- In New Castle, Penn., Family 1st FCU will be giving out refreshments and hosting a Chinese Auction. Every member who comes into a branch will be given three tickets to put in one of six gift baskets of their choice. The credit union is also giving away prizes for kids and other materials.
- WESTconsin Credit Union is planning free community shred events at several locations, and is also marking ICU Day with refreshments, beverages, door prizes, kids’ activities and more at its 14 offices. Consumers may bring up to two boxes/bags or 100 pounds of materials to be shredded. Additional shredding is available for $5 per box/bag.
- In Battle Creek, Mich., Kellogg Community FCU is inviting its members and the community to stop by any of their branch locations for refreshments, drawings, and giveaways.
- Across Minnesota, 14 CUs are participating in an orchestrated day to spread kindness in communities. Nearly 1,000 credit union employees will dedicate more than 6,200 total volunteer hours to scatter kindness in their communities. Participating credit unions estimate that the collective efforts on this day will impact more than 18,000 people in 36 communities, organizers said. The statewide day of kindness was inspired by “Plus It Forward Day,” which was created by Affinity Plus FCU in 2013. This year’s participants include Affinity Plus, City & County CU, First Alliance CU, Heartland CU, Hiway Federal, Mayo Employees FCU, Mid-Minnesota FCU, North Memorial FCU, SharePoint CU, Soo Line CU, St. Cloud FCU, Topline FCU, Virginia Co-op CU, and the Minnesota CU Network.
- In Michigan, Forest Area Federal Credit Union plans to “surprise” the staff of its Kingsley, Mich., branch location with an early morning activity today. The activity will direct the branch team to take $500 provided to them by the credit union and “pay it forward” into their community. Forest Area FCU will kick off its full staff meeting today by directing the Kingsley Branch Team to spend that hour and then return to the meeting to share their experiences. Forest Area FCU performed this Pay it Forward Activity with their Kalkaska branch location in February of 2015 with great results.
- In New York, several cash mobs have been organized, including one that will meet in Syracuse at the Books End bookstore. Any children’s books purchased can be donated to the local “Success By Six” program that provides free books to children.
- In Florida, GTE Financial Credit Union will unveil a “virtual grand opening” of a new 3-D environment on its website. The site can be found at www.gtefinancial.org. The credit union said it will also have a special announcement in “3-D,” unveiling today the grand prize winner of its “Home Free with GTE” contest at 2 p.m. ET.
- Across Kansas today, 20 credit unions will be participating in the Kansas Credit Union Association's seventh Make a Difference event. The events, held in 18 Kansas communities, will be throughout the day, with the first one starting somewhere in Kansas at 6 a.m., and the last one starting at 6 p.m. The times and locations are kept secret to instill the element of surprise. The participating credit unions and the Association reveal the times and locations via social networks, mostly Facebook and Twitter. Follow using the hashtag #theCUwayKS. "The events are designed to bring awareness of the value credit unions provide to their communities," said Susan Dyer, c communications director of the Kansas Credit Union Association and coordinator of these events. "This is our seventh one, and they keep growing in popularity. Our first event in 2012 had nine credit unions participating, and now we are up to 20 credit unions."
On Thursday, a total of $17,600 will be given away to consumers in Arkansas City, Atchison, Augusta, Clay Center, El Dorado, Emporia, Great Bend, Hutchinson, Kansas City, Manhattan, Marysville, Ness City, Mission, Newton, Norton, Topeka, Wichita and Winfield.
In addition, every time the #theCUwayKS hashtag is used on October 15, the Kansas Credit Union Association will give $1 to Children's Miracle Network Hospitals in Kansas (up to $500).
After Thursday's event, credit unions in Kansas will have given away a total of $135,600 during all seven events.
The Disclosures, credit unions’ only education-focused rock band, will be releasing a fun and informative video for credit union employees on International Credit Union Day. The video is intended for employees who may not know the purpose behind ICU Day and how important it is to celebrate and share the credit union roots and mission.
“Given the ICU Day theme of ‘people helping people’ this year, we wanted to give something back to the industry that has given us so much,” said band member Christopher Morris. “Our presentation style is loose and light-hearted, and we prefer guitars to a slide deck, so we hope credit unions find value and joy in sharing our message with staff.”
If interested in viewing and sharing The Disclosures’ ICU Day video, visit the band’s YouTube page at www.youtube.com/user/thedisclosures and subscribe to be notified as soon as it’s uploaded. The video’s estimated run time will be 20-30 minutes.