Credit unions around the world are preparing to celebrate International Credit Union (ICU) Day on Thursday, Oct. 21.
The annual event, which started in 1948 and is held by CUNA and the World Council of Credit Unions, is intended to highlight what it means for people to have a credit union as their financial partner. The theme for 2021, “Building financial health for a brighter tomorrow,” focuses on the heart of the credit union movement—a commitment to members’ financial well-being.
Participating credit unions are encouraged to share their days by using #ICUDay. Some ICU Day-themed activities that credit unions have already announced include:
The $2.1 billion Credit Union of Southern California (CU SoCal) in Anaheim Hills, is giving away $5,000 to individuals who share their credit union stories. The contest is already underway, running the entire month of October and concluding when CU SoCal selects 10 winning stories, with each winner receiving $500. Members and non-members are invited to enter.
Interested participants should visit cusocal.org/bettertomorrow to share their stories, which, according to a press release, “can include how CU SoCal, or any credit union, helped them save for a home or set them up for future financial success. A variety of stories are welcome, as long as they detail how a credit union led to building a better tomorrow.” In order to win, entrants must follow CU SoCal on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, or Twitter.
“We’re committed to our mission to Build Better Lives, and we love hearing stories about the positive impact of credit unions,” CU SoCal President/CEO Dave Gunderson says. “This contest encapsulates what CU SoCal is all about.”
Fibre Federal Credit Union and TLC are celebrating by giving all of their employees $10 to make a positive impact on the lives of others. Employees are challenged to pay it forward by “pitching in for a family’s groceries, adding to someone’s gas money, or donating to a local charity,” according to a press release.
The $1.5 billion asset credit union in Longview, Wash., plans to share #CreditUnionGood stories on Facebook throughout Thursday, Oct. 21.
The credit union invites members and non-members to visit the branch to celebrate with popcorn and candy and register for a raffle that includes a grand prize of a $250 Indiana Members MasterCard® gift card.
The $82 million asset Marshfield Medical Center Credit Union is holding a raffle from Oct. 14 to Oct. 25. The celebration also will recognize the 56th anniversary of the credit union, which was founded on Oct. 21, 1965.
“Credit unions were built on the principle of ‘people helping people.’ We’ve seen that philosophy in action for more than 100 years, with credit unions providing access to affordable financial products and striving to meet the needs of underserved communities,” says President David Murphy. “MMCCU is honored to be a part of this proud tradition.”
Participating individuals will enter to win a $250 VISA gift card grand prize, as well as $20 Marshfield Area Chamber of Commerce and Industry gift certificates and $5 Coffee Cabin gift certificates. Raffle winners will be announced Oct. 26 on the credit union’s Facebook page.
The credit unions chose the nonprofits because of their commitments to ending the cycle of poverty and providing crucial housing for women, children, and families.
“Transitions always tries to be a warm, welcoming place for the women and children who oftentimes are experiencing their worst days when they meet us,” Transitions Development Director Sarah Lickfold says. “The International Credit Union Day projects will provide not only a beautiful atmosphere for our child care center but also thoughtful gifts to welcome participants to our programs. We can't wait to see these projects happen.”
The collaborative group of credit unions will make monetary donations to each organization. More than 70 volunteers will fill flower beds, prepare playground spaces, build a storage shed, and assemble welcome kits for those in need.
"We at Family Promise of Spokane feel so honored to be selected as a beneficiary," says Joe Ader, Family Promise of Spokane executive director. "To have all the credit unions in our community rally on behalf of our families is truly humbling. This project is going to make a tremendous difference for us and we are profoundly grateful."
The $3.7 million asset Royal Credit Union, Eau Claire, Wis., held a drawing for gift baskets in each office from Oct. 11 to Oct. 20.
On Oct. 21, Royal employees will hand out gift bags near each office.
The $552 million asset American 1 Credit Union in Jackson, Mich., is offering members a free thank-you gift at any branch location during regular hours of operation on Oct. 21.
“International Credit Union Day offers an opportunity to bring special awareness to not only the services
we provide to better our community, but also our appreciation for those who continue to trust us with their financial wellness,” says American 1 Credit Union President/CEO Martha Fuerstenau. “We are proud of our long-standing history as a credit union who has remained true to our roots since 1950.”
The $2.5 billion asset CoVantage Credit Union in Antigo, Wis., will offer individually wrapped chocolate chip cookies at branch locations on Oct. 21. Members and non-members are invited to visit any location to celebrate.
The $908 million asset Del Norte Credit Union in Santa Fe, N.M., is highlighting the ways in which the credit union seeks to create financial well-being for all.
“This year’s theme for International Credit Union Day is a helpful reminder of our credit union’s mission to improve lives, both young and old, in New Mexico,” Del Norte Chief Marketing Officer Kim Currie says.