A Year's Worth Of Giving

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For credit unions, apparently the holidays don't just begin and end in December.

During 2003 credit unions across the country helped make wishes, stuff buses and feed the hungry. As readers are aware, each week The Credit Union Journal recognizes efforts by credit unions to do good in their communities via this newspaper's Community News section (see pages 18 and 20 inside). During 2003, credit unions recognized on those pages raised more than $7.5 million for a wide variety of causes. The actual figure for credit union fundraising is most certainly higher, as much of the good work credit unions do goes unreported.

Moreover, the figure above recognizes only monetary contributions. The hours of time donated by credit union employees and volunteers are almost incalculable, and include mentoring elementary school students, painting houses, visiting shut-ins and hospital patients, cleaning up litter, staffing the soda pop trailer at high school football games, and so much more.

In looking back at the reporting on The Journal's Community News pages for 2003 we reported on credit unions raising money for hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of college scholarships, the Make A Wish Foundation, the Children's Miracle Network, for children's hospitals, to buy stuffed bears for police officers to distribute to children at traumatic scenes, to help fight cancer, find a cure for Muscular Dystrophy, and to keep crisis hotlines operating. Credit unions helped provide funding to the Special Olympics, Kids Fairs, to feed and house the homeless, to provide for the family of a slain sheriff's deputy, to make life better for soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq, and to find cures for asthma, breast cancer and diabetes. Other donations ranged from the high tech (personal computers) to the natural (trees). And, of course, Maine's credit unions have done a bountiful job of helping to feed that state's hungry.

The Credit Union Journal welcomes your submissions to our Community News section during 2004. Please send news and photos to Judy Hartnett at jhartnett cujournal.com.

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