Maine CUs Donate 16,360 Hours of Time

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Credit union representatives in this state volunteered 16,360.25 hours of their time during 2004, an increase of 8% over 2003, according to the Maine Credit Union League, which coordinates the program "Maine Credit Unions Share for ME." Using figures from the Points of Light Foundation, which calculates the value of one hour volunteered at $17.55, the value of the time volunteered by Maine's credit unions equaled $287,118 in 2004, the league said. The MCUL reported that 1,705 staff and volunteers representing Maine's credit unions participated in the program during the past year.

In 2004, the top five credit unions donating the most volunteer hours were Oxford FCU in Mexico (3,126.50); Saco Valley CU (1,995.50); Five County CU (1,834.75); Rainbow FCU (1,476); and Midcoast FCU (1,343). The top five credit unions with the most total volunteers were: Saco Valley (161); Midcoast FCU (156); Maine Highlands FCU (147); Oxford FCU (144); and Five County CU in Bath (130), the league reported.

Throughout the year, credit union representatives participate in community-related projects, such as school activities, serving on boards, donating blood, youth athletics, soup kitchens and a variety of other events and activities, all of which are tracked and tabulated. In 2004, the program averaged 1,363 hours volunteered per month with an average of 142 volunteers participating. Credit Unions Share for ME tracks and updates the volunteer efforts of credit unions on a monthly basis.

"Since credit unions were founded by volunteers, this program is an extension of the core credit union philosophy of 'people helping people,'" said the league's Jon Paradise.

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