Employee Association Helps Keep DMFCU Active In Its Community

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When people here need help, they know where to turn first-DM Federal Credit Union's employee association.

Established by employees at least 15 years ago, the association has become a core provider of community volunteers willing to do whatever they can to raise money for charity, collect toys and feed families in need. Even when it means walking for miles and miles, dressing in silly costumes and giving up their weekends.

"Whatever people need, we try to get it,'' said Marlene Brandon, DMFCU Employee Association President and first mortgage assistant. "We try to be involved in as much as we can.''

Brandon said the association is run by a group of staff that has expressed a passion for helping people. "We like to have (at least) one representative from each of our 10 branches,'' she said. With two more branches in the works, she expects even more involvement.

Each month, the group meets to make suggestions and discuss requests from other staff and outside groups for their services. Once they create a calendar of events, they put out a call to the entire CU staff for volunteers to assist them.

"If the whole credit union wants to join in, great,'' she said, noting that typically 15 to 20 employees participate in each event. "Some participate all the time while others choose events (and organizations) that are close to their hearts.''

She said the participation not only makes the credit union volunteers feel good, it helps the credit union look good. CU volunteers wear shirts bearing the company name and logo.

In recent weeks, they prepared and served a warm meal to residents of their local Ronald McDonald House, a home-away-from-home for families with sick children. They also participated in the United Way's Day of Caring. Brandon said the association is a huge supporter of Tu Nidito (Your Little Nest), a non-profit group that collects items for needy people who have terminally ill family members. Last year, employees of DM Federal donated five computers along with many other items of the organization's wish list. And, annually, association members gather to walk in the annual Climb to Conquer Cancer on A Mountain. They donned costumes for a Halloween event to raise money for sick children.

"It makes me feel good when I walk away and know that I did something for the community and people who really need help,'' Brandon said.

Jill Figueroa, DMFCU Senior Marketing Specialist, said employee involvement in such events breeds morale. "Tucson has always been known as a caring city,'' she said. "And DM's participation is a great example of that.''

Brandon said her bosses feel so strongly about the association that they give her 10 minutes to address employees about upcoming events during quarterly meetings.

She often invites a guest speaker of one of the organizations being helped.

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