NCUF Continues To Seek Funds for Hurricane Katrina Recovery Efforts

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The National CU Foundation continues to seek donations for the ongoing Hurricane Katrina relief efforts, as CUs in the affected areas are still working to rebuild.

The foundation's development director, Ruth Jaure, participated in NCUA's "town hall meeting" that brought together 57 credit unions in the Big Easy. While there, Jaure had the opportunity to survey the hard-hit 9th Ward and also visited the New Orleans branch of Mississippi-based Hope Community Credit Union, which the credit union hopes to reopen next month.

"I heard incredible stories from credit union employees and how they jumped into action to help their members and each other," Jaure reported. "Some moved into rooms with up to 15 other people, and used our first round of disaster relief grants to buy a refrigerator or a washing machine. Yet even though they were dealing with their own personal challenges, they set up makeshift credit union operations within days."

While the nation's attention has moved on to other issues, NCUF is working to make sure that the effects of Hurricane Katrina aren't soon forgotten.

"The ongoing needs are tremendous," Jaure related, "but the credit unions are taking one day at a time. They are focused on serving their members and helping their employees adjust to these life-changing experiences. We are eager to help them as they enter the next phase of recovery."

NCUF so far has committed and/or disbursed:

* $990,000 for Louisiana;

* $500,000 for Mississippi;

* $150,000 to Alabama;

* $50,000 to Texas;

* $150,000 to the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions for low-income credit unions in affected states.

Since Hurricane Katrina, NCUF's Disaster Relief Fund has raised more than $2.7 million. Every dollar raised will continue to be used for disaster relief benefiting credit union organizations and their employees.

For info: www.ncuf.coop.

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